“Why India Needs Fewer Cattle Than Cars” (SN January 2017)
Roshni Rajendra, Bengaluru
98% of the world’s biomass is comprised of humans and the animals that humans domesticate (this is excluding all micro-organisms). This means that humans have driven almost all other species to extinction. The beauty of nature is in its diversity and it is this diversity that helps biological systems clean themselves. Something that human intervention is impeding.
Milk, by the way, is not something that humans can inherently digest. I do agree that milk is an easily accessible and cheap source of nourishment for children, but inspite of India accounting for 18.5% of the world’s milk production, 30% of Indian children under the age of 3 are underweight and a lot more are wasted and stunted.
Like the article said, we need more efficient cattle management systems in place and I am curious to know about the distribution of milk in India.
But I digress. Yes, there is a western demand, but there is an increasing demand for beef in India as well and I am curious as to how this issue has been under wraps for so long. I am sure environmental watchdogs and research organizations must have known this for a while.
There is a very poignant documentary on this secrecy called Cowspiracy: The Sustainability Secret that I would recommend.
What a preposterous assumption that reduce cattle and increase cars per person, by corollary. What then happens to the food security, milk availability for the impoverished children of the country? Any international convention cannot be above the fulfillment of the basic needs of a 130 crore strong population where malnutrition still is a significant challenge. Can the developed countries reduce some of their excessive consumption to be more responsible global citizens please?
Aravind Sitaraman, Bengaluru
This sort of bullshit analysis have been published before and have been massively discredited. Previously, another study said that Indian cows’ farts were environmentally debilitating. Indian cows, like Indian citizens, hardly contribute to global warming as we hardly use inorganic matter (the numbers are rising however) especially when compared to their Western counterparts.
The issue is that we constantly look at everything through the eyes of the Western “researcher” or “scientist” who is essentially funded by some corporation. They use the veneer of science and the eloquence of a brand university to add weight to their so-called research. The present Federal Government is doing well on so many fronts but is doing a terrible job on the environment.
In the interest of achieving “development” at all costs, they are sacrificing the environment and culture. The idea of looking at cattle as a subservient entity existing to serve humanity with its production of milk is not only immoral but also against the Constitution of India. The Indian Constitution is the only one
in the world that guarantees equal living rights to all beings including animals and plants. Such a departure from our traditional values following the advice of selfish people will definitely erode us as human beings.
We threw out coconut oil because Harvard “researchers” told us that coconut oil is bad for you. Now that Hawaii is producing a lot of coconuts, coconut oil is all of a sudden very good for you. Similarly, for sesame oil and many of our traditional dietary items.
Also remember the argument of how useless A2 milk is and how superior A1 milk is. We immediately devalued our cows and started importing Jersey cows and impregnating them with imported semen. Now that American companies own the patents for A2 milk production, reproduction, and breeding, all of a sudden A2 milk is better.