Opinion – Terra Vegana: Mimimi Barbecue


And we started the year with a mimimi barbecue. “Cattle ranchers employ thousands, pay taxes” and… are terrified to see the fortune accumulated over dead bodies and carcasses of cattle, chickens and pigs be drastically reduced in the coming years.

It doesn’t matter if the bank is Bradesco or not, or what the interest and income rates are: there is a real demand for food with less meat on the plate, which translates into less money in your pocket for those who raise animals for the slaughter and human consumption.

This demand is not just from vegans and vegetarians, but also from people who eat meat. The global Meatless Monday movement has been around for almost twenty years, and with each passing year, the number of adherents grows.

Today, the campaign is active in at least 40 countries, including Brazil, with the adhesion and promotion of the Brazilian Vegetarian Society since 2009.

The proposal of the movement, which has sponsors such as Paul McCartney in the United Kingdom and Xuxa Meneghel in Brazil, is to encourage supporters to spend a single day a week without consuming products of animal origin.

I didn’t see the people from the barbecue mimimi in the row of bones distributing their skewers to the people, only in the line at the bank. So, the argument that “we move the country’s economy” doesn’t touch me at all.

On the other hand, there is no lack of reasons for those who want to join the Meatless Monday.

A person who chooses to eat 100% vegetable meals on Monday saves 3,400 liters of water (the equivalent of 26 baths of 15 minutes each) and 14 kg of carbon dioxide emissions into the atmosphere (which corresponds to 100 km driven in a car common).

It’s good for the planet, and good for health: a diet with more vegetables and whole foods and less meat and its derivatives reduces the risk of cancer, heart disease, diabetes and obesity.

To close the list of reasons that can lead someone to join Meatless Monday, we cannot forget about animals. Every second, an ox, a pig and 180 chickens die in Brazil, according to a survey carried out by the IBGE in 2015.

Spending a day based on vegetables is also contributing to this statistic decreasing and not representing so many deaths of animals that are created solely and exclusively for slaughter.

Within the vegan movement, there are those who look with doubts and criticism at the Meatless Monday, as it does not promote veganism per se, but “only” an awareness of the environment, health and animals. An initiative that would not have much greater consequences than appeasing the conscience of those who consume meat on the other six days of the week.

While I agree that veganism is not a diet, and that its horizon extends far beyond food, I am a Meatless Monday enthusiast.

I’m not the one who’s going to set up a zucchini-flavored mimimi barbecue stand on the doorstep of those who are trying to make a difference on Mondays, whether for the environment, animals or their own health.

A 2021 study by Brighton and Sussex Medical School showed that ⅓ of Britons who joined Meatless Monday became vegetarian or vegan within five years.

There is no reason to remove a campaign from the air (really, Bradesco?) that encourages people to adhere to the Second without Meat, much less to reduce the relevance and achievements of this movement.

For those who want to join, it is worth visiting the Brazilian Vegetarian Society page, which offers a free ebook with recipes and guidelines for leaving meat aside on Mondays.


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