Turkey Day?

I’ve gotta say, as a vegetarian, “Turkey Day” is probably my least favorite nickname for the rapidly approaching holiday.  I’m not anti-meat– I understand the decision to eat meat and have no problem being around it.  But this zen attitude about dietary choices only works until “Turkey Day”.  Yeah, I get it, the whole day is about something I choose not to do, but do you really have to rub it in?  Maybe you should just call it “MEEEEEEAT FOR ALL TURKEY SO DELISH OMG Day!”

According to National Geographic, 736 million pounds of turkey will be basted, roasted, or fried, and served up on Thanksgiving Day.  To give a little perspective, that’s approximately the weight of the Empire State Building.

That’s a lot of turkey.

“Turkey Day” comes by its nickname honestly enough.  If only it came by its turkeys through equally honest means– today’s twenty pound turkeys aren’t natural, and meeting the demand for the concentrated, excessive meat consumption causes a lot of environmental harm.  But Turkey Day just wouldn’t be Turkey Day without the turkey, or so I hear, and thankfully you can still do a lot to be more sustainable:

  1. Over the next month, per person turkey consumption in the US will total 6 pounds.  Try cutting back a little– a smaller turkey serving will hardly be noticed at a Thanksgiving feast, especially with lots of delicious side dishes!
  2. Look for a turkey labeled “organic” and “pasture-raised”.
  3. The best thing you can do is try to get your turkey from a local farmer’s market or a store stocking local produce.  Added bonus: it’ll be fresher!

This way you can have your turkey and eat it too.  I hope you all have a lovely Thanksgiving next week, and in the meantime I’ll be finding and sharing recipes for a delicious, sustainable Turkey Day.

Sources:

Empire State Building photocredit: http://www.beckermanphoto.com/wp-content/uploads2/empire-state-building-1136-beckermanphoto1.jpg
Statistics on Canada’s population and building masses: WolframAlpha.com
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Thanksgiving_dinner
http://news.nationalgeographic.com/news/2013/11/131122-thanksgiving-2013-dinner-recipes-pilgrims-day-parade-history-facts/
 
 
Author: Charlotte Humes
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