Archive for the ‘Vegetarians’ Category

The risk of accuracy

February 6, 2013
Percentage symbol

Watch those percentages… (image by NavBack)

I love reading about risk. As someone who finds maths a bit of a challenge, it always becomes more real to me when the numbers relate to the real world. Using numbers to explain the risk of something happening seems like an excellent way to harness the power of maths – numbers are objective, concrete, and not vague.

But as always in the messy real world, it’s not quite that simple. That’s why I was really inspired by this blog post from the Risk Science Center at the University of Michigan, explaining how extra levels of ‘accuracy’ – more numbers – can actually make risks harder to understand. (more…)


Ethical meat on the horizon?

March 4, 2012
Quorn fillets

Today's fake meat - delicious Quorn fillets (image by Jan Ainali)

I’ve been on holiday, but while searching for vegetarian food in Tenerife I found myself thinking about the ‘test tube burgers’ I’d been reading about just before I left. In the Canary islands, nearly all the red meat is imported from the mainland because there’s very little grazing space for animals – wouldn’t it be so much easier if they could just grow their own burgers in factories?

The next question is, would I eat ‘artificial’ meat? I’ve been asked this before, and to me it’s a no-brainer – why wouldn’t I? If I could eat a steak that had never been near a real cow, and had never had to be hacked out of a once-living animal, then sure I would (although I wouldn’t pay the estimated £200,000 for the first lab-grown burger). And I hope other people would too – where’s the harm in a more ethical, more environmentally friendly piece of protein? (more…)

Six kinds of meat-eater (by a vegetarian)

October 17, 2011

A meat eater with good excuse

I’m Nell, and I’m a vegetarian. If that sounds like a guilty confession – it isn’t. But I certainly have been judged for it in the past, even though I try not to mention it very often. Today I read a silly and funny article on ‘the six kinds of vegetarian’ – I chuckled at some of the recognisable stereotypes, but I also felt a bit sad. Why is it so hard to find an article about vegetarians that doesn’t make fun of them??

Then I realised that one easy (and childish) way to make myself feel better would be to write a silly riposte – the six kinds of meat-eaters. It’s completely evidence-based (my own personal evidence, that is). Here goes… (more…)

Why hate vegetarians?

September 20, 2010

Mmmmm... tofu!

I don’t usually tell people I’m vegetarian (unless they say something like ‘why aren’t you having any bacon?’). But when I do I occasionally get an odd reaction.

Some quiz me on exactly what I do and don’t eat, why I decided to stop eating meat, and why I still eat eggs and milk. I’m not sure why they care so much, but it often seems like they’re convinced I’m judging them (I am – I think they’re weird).

What I’m starting to realise is that this odd reaction might be the tip of an iceberg – one that you can see the full extent of in the comments left on most online articles that mention vegetarians. (more…)