I first heard about vegans in the early 1990’s. They don’t eat meat, but they also won’t eat anything that is a meat by-product, like dairy or eggs. While some of the nuttier (pardon the pun) vegans claim you’ll get sick and die faster from eating meat, some are just expressing a desire not to contribute to a food chain that involves the death of living animals.
People do get along fine not eating animal products, but I have to laugh at some of the YouTube videos I see of people earnestly trying to find the vegan substitute that will taste just like cheese, or bacon or something else they could find at half the price at a grocery store. This leads me to an important point, the average vegan can eat because of meat.
Americans eat a lot of meat. We eat a lot of other things, and many of them comes from all over the place. Locally sourcing common staple foods might be better, but then each person is driving to the farmer’s market rather than one big truck run delivered to the local supermarket.
Then there’s vegetables. In raw form, they have a tiny number of calories per cubic foot. That makes those truck trips more frequent. Plus, the more volume one eats, the more comes out the other end. There’s more water usage. The same goes for preparing vegetables, which all have to be washed.
While it may be possible to have a more efficient system of transporting vegan-only items, American food infrastructure is geared to a animal raising and transporting model. Chicken and cows contribute eggs and milk and get to be card for on a farm. The alternative is to not be alive, because wild animals are not particularly useful to anyone. Vegan alternatives support an industry paying manufacturers, farmers and truckers. Those people are mostly supported by the calories and nutrition in meat.
But hey, if it makes people feel batter because they don’t eat something with a face, so be it. Just remember, potatoes have eyes.