Nikki Benoit, Outreach Coordinator for Florida Voices for Animals, had the opportunity to talk with Senator Barack Obama about U.S. agriculture and diet. Here’s a bit of their dialogue via Vegan.com. Take a look:
I stated how the UN’s reporting that animal agriculture contributes more to greenhouse gas emissions than all of transportation. I mentioned that over 10 billion land animals are funneled through egregious conditions in factory farms and that it requires an obscene amount of water and resources to maintain them [70% of all our grain goes through them]. I reiterated that our health epidemic is only compounded by our environmental crises and resource depletion, and what, as the leader of the most amazing nation, would he do about this [again, this is all a blur...I believe the media picked this up, too - I hope it made more sense at the time.]Vegan.com is touting this as “Obama’s vegan movement.” I wouldn’t go that far, but it’s cool to hear a presidential nominee urging people to eat more plant foods and less animal products—anyone know McCain’s position on this?
His response included an admission that our infrastructure needs fixing, and that subsidies need to be taken away from large scale animal ag, helping small family farms. He acknowledged that our health care crises needs to incorporate preventative measures, including more fresh vegetables and fruit. He also said schools need more of these items versus pre-packaged food and meat products. And of course, he pointed the finger at China and India and that their new diet [which is mimicking ours] needs to be changed.