‘Meatless Monday’ gaffe slammed

The US Department of Agriculture (USDA) was forced into a humiliating back-down after publicly endorsing the ‘Meatless Monday’ concept.

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Backers of the campaign argue going meatless once a week could reduce the risk of cancer, cardiovascular disease, diabetes and obesity, among other conditions. They say the campaign can also help reduce carbon footprints and save precious resources such as fresh water and fossil fuel.

The recommendation appeared in the USDA’s monthly Greening Headquarters Update to employees. In between updates on office sustainability initiatives, the newsletter encouraged readers to give ‘Meatless Monday’ a try by sampling some of the options available in USDA cafeterias.

“One simple way to reduce our environmental impact while dining at our cafeteria is to participate in the ‘Meatless Monday’ initiative” is the way the ‘endorsement’ was phrased. It was immediately condemned by the National Cattlemen’s Beef Association (NCBA). The USDA’s support for the ‘Meatless Monday’ campaign calls into question the department’s commitment to US farmers and ranchers, said the NCBA. 

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