08 What can you do

As consumers you have more power than you think. Quite simply, the purpose of supermarkets and other food businesses is to make profits, which are generated when you buy their products. They will only stock what sells and what you buy.

Every dollar you spend is a vote for the type of food system and earth you would like to be a part of.

Start today and...

  • Implement household meat free days.
  • Only purchase organic, biodynamic or free range meat. Check out our directory of Ethical Meat Suppliers in Victoria.
  • Ask your delicatessen or butcher for free range options or start buying your meat from accredited farmers'markets.
  • Always ask questions when ordering meat at a restaurant and don't just assume that because you are paying top dollar, the meat has been farmed ethically.
  • Reduce your dairy intake and try to buy milk and cheese products from smaller organic dairy farms and cheese producers. If you reduce your dairy intake by just 2 cups of milk per week, you will save 13,000 litres of water and 250kg of greenhouse pollution in a year.52
  • Never purchase cage eggs and look for appropriate logos or support smaller free range producers. Even better, buy your own chooks and have unlimited access to happy eggs.
  • Look for grass fed options over grain fed because this places less stress on the environment.
  • Write to the government or your supermarket to express your views on factory farming. Proof that it works is that Coles supermarket has decided to ban the use of sow stalls on their own-brand pork products from 2014.
  • Discuss your purchasing decisions with your friends and family so they too can consider changing.

Our top 7 tips for being a Mindful Meat Eater

1.        Make meat a treat

Start by giving Meatless Mondays a go. Reduce the portion size of meat you use in dishes and make the humble vegetable the hero. Also reduce your dairy intake and support small artisan cheese and milk producers who farm using organic or biodynamic principles.

2.        Choose more eco-friendly meats (and fish) 

All types of meat have an environmental impact or ethical consequence, but there are some meats whose farming/harvesting has less of an impact than others. Learn which meats and fish are a better choice, e.g. wild-harvested meat, like wild rabbit or hare is likely to have the least environmental impact, farmed lamb and beef have the most. 

3.        Choose grass-fed or pasture-raised organic meat, dairy & eggs

Choose milk from organic/biodynamic farms and beef from grass (pasture)-fed over grain-fed cows, because fewer resources have gone into the feeding of these cows. Milk and meat from grass-fed animals is also more nutritious and therefore better for you.

4.        Support a nose-to-tail philosophy

Choose less popular cuts of meat like neck cuts, liver, ears, and support a nose to tail philosophy. After all if an animal has to die for us, we should respect it enough to eat all of it.

5.        Buy ethically-farmed meat from small organic or biodynamic farms

Small-scale farms practising organic or biodynamic methods take care to minimise their impact on the environment. Avoid factory-farmed meat. If a meat is widely available in supermarkets, it is likely to be from a large-scale or factory farm, and likely to be grain-fed, or at least finished at a feedlot. As a general rule, chickens and eggs sold in large supermarket chains under the free range label at a similar price to the conventional equivalent are unlikely to meet strict ethical standards.


6.        Shop at accredited farmers’ markets

They are a great place to purchase your meat from as you can speak directly to farmers who have often chosen to raise heritage breeds in smaller quantities. You are likely to pay a little more for your meat, however, the extra cost is worth it because the taste is sensational and if you have committed to making meat a treat, you will be buying less of it anyway.

Visit our directory Ethical Meat Suppliers today (Victoria and Sydney only).