Guest Contributor: Mindy Quigley on Despite my best efforts, I’m still eating meat.

I bought a ham and pineapple pizza today. It is lurking in my freezer right now, an unholy mix of cheese, tropical fruit and pig flesh. But before I tell you about the pizza, let me tell you about why Hugh Fearnley-Whittingstall and I are well-intentioned hypocrites. A few weeks ago, Hugh published this great article in the Guardian. His thesis is nicely summarized here: “I really have been eating a lot less meat lately and I’m feeling almost evangelical about persuading other people to do the same.” Great, Hugh. I feel the same way. I, too, really try to eat as little meat as I can. Vegetables are good for me. They are good for the planet. They are certainly good for the little piggies and chickens who will not sacrifice their lives for my pleasure. But I still find myself eating meat at least a few times a week. And Hugh, of course, was back in the Guardian the following week, publishing a recipe for the extremely unkosher dish Pork in Milk.
I guess it’s like anything good we try to do in this world. Surely every little helps? For heaven’s sake, Tesco says it in their commercials; it must be true. But is it? Is just eating less meat enough? Or eating lower on the food chain? I’ve really been struggling with this, and the answer I’ve arrived at is: yes. Yes, Hugh and I are hypocrites. We continue to do something that we know is wrong (for us, for the world, for the cuddly wittle wambs) just because it gives us pleasure. I see this as a bit like occasionally chucking out a plastic container instead of recycling it. It’s the wrong thing to do, but if most of us are recycling most of the time there is an incremental improvement (or lessening of suffering). Every little helps.

So, Hugh and I will continue to do our best. Now, if you’ll excuse me, I have to preheat the oven.

Mindy Quigley

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