I choose not to be a vegetarian; rather I choose to find my food locally if possible, and in ways that are, to use the popular term, sustainable.
This means that outfits like Wal*Mart are my last choice for shopping, as they push for uniformity, output, and cost versus sustainability in everything in the store. This unfortunately contributes to the decline of diversity in agriculture, durable goods production, and soft and hard goods production. (The New York Times ran an article on this a couple years ago.) Yes, they’re cheaper for some things (and a lot of the time you can do better at Target) but I encourage you to look at who is the end recipient of your dollar. You can indeed buy inexpensive, and you can still buy local. So what it it costs an extra buck? That’s paying a dollar support local people.
But getting back to the topic: I encourage you to take some time and surf The Food Alliance; this is a certification organization whose members are dedicated to sustainable agriculture.
From the foodalliance.org site:
When Food Alliance talks about “sustainable agriculture,” we mean the ability to produce safe, healthy, delicious, and affordable food to meet diverse needs without degrading agricultural lands, the quality of life in our communities, or the resiliency of the broader ecosystems on which we all depend.
Food Alliance offers the most comprehensive certification program for sustainably produced food in North America. We cover the issues that matter to you, including safe and fair working conditions, humane treatment of animals, and protection of the environment.
Food Alliance certification is backed by a rigorous and independent third-party inspection. That means that Food Alliance Certified products are products you can trust.
Not bad, eh?
In choosing where we get our food, we can support those who care for our planet. We need not restrict our diet, but instead choose its origins.