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According to the website Quartz, Obama spoke at the Global Food Innovation Summit in Milano, Italy about the importance of cutting back on meat. While it wasn’t the hard stance against eating meat, he did speak up against the harm being done by animal agriculture.
“I think people naturally understand that big smokestacks have pollution in them and they understand air pollution, so they can easily make the connection between energy production and the idea of greenhouse gases. People aren’t as familiar with the impact of cows and methane, unless you’re a farmer,” Obama stated, according QZ.com
He continued, “That doesn’t mean that we can’t teach you and me to have a smaller steak, for our own health. It doesn’t mean we can’t make progress in educating the advanced world about the need to reduce, just for dietary reasons, the amount of meat that we consume at any given meal.”
When Kass pointed out that he may have cooked thousands of steaks for Obama during his Presidency, Obama responded with a smile, saying, “I don’t know about thousands. Maybe hundreds. What is true is I am not a vegetarian. I respect vegetarians, but I am not one of them.”
While that may not be a statement that is as strong as vegans wish Obama would make, it is certainly further than other former Presidents have gone in speaking up about the grave damage being done by meat industry.
Robin Raven is the author of Santa’s First Vegan Christmas. She has written for publications such as The Malibu Times, Alabama Baby & Child Magazine, the official website of Melissa Gilbert, and USAToday.com. She holds a BFA from the School of Visual Arts and is now furthering her education. Robin often has her nose in a book and her arms around a rescued animal. She’s a vegan foodie who blogs at RobinRaven.com and loves to connect with readers on social media. You can follow her @RobinRaven on Twitter.
Former President Barack Obama has spoken up on food policy matters in a way that he never has before
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