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Sustainable ranching

(article, Caroline Cummins)

So we all know that the factory-farm system of raising animals for meat is destructive on many levels — to the environment, the animals, and your own health. But here comes a report saying that ranching, if done properly — i.e., no CAFOs — could not only be healthful for the animals and the people who eat them, but for the land those animals graze. 

As the Christian Science Monitor reports, sustainable ranching is nothing more than ranchers encouraging their herds to behave like herds in the wild: densely grazing one area briefly, then moving on, allowing the land to be fertilized and then to recover. (To readers of Michael Pollan's bestselling The Omnivore's Dilemma, the notion is familiar from the section profiling Joel Salatin's Polyface Farm.)

Another idea comes from the Ethicurean, which recently discussed the idea of a cow tax to help deal with the environmental pollution caused by livestock. Their highly researched take on the concept is: Interesting, but will it really change the way we raise our beef?