I bought a vegetarian magazine last week (it shall remain nameless to protect the innocent!) At first glance it was OK, lots of good recipes and, thankfully, no Parmesan but there were several quite gung-ho articles about sustainability, environmental issues and food miles as well as a few campaigns for this and that. It seemed to be assumed that all vegetarians were interested and in favour of these things; there was also a subliminal undertone of worthiness which really grated on me.
Now, it could be said that I am a very strange person (it has been said before!) and not your typical veggie, but I make no apologies for saying I am not remotely interested in sustainability, environmental issues or food miles. In fact, if anyone starts on about these subjects, my eyes glaze over, my brain shuts down and I get an overwhelming urge to give the speaker/writer a poke in the eye.
I became a veggie because I don’t want to eat animals, no other reason, simple. My decision had nothing to do with where food is shipped from or the alleged effects of climate change; I didn’t consider farming practices or whether farmers get paid enough for their crops by the big supermarkets and I really don’t care about saving the planet because I think the planet will be just fine despite the puny, ineffectual efforts of the human race to destroy it.
When I buy a food magazine I don’t want to pay good money to read other people’s opinions which rarely tally with mine and are usually ill-thought out and simplistic. Rather than follow the diktat of environmentalists, food writers, brainless politicians and others who make a good living from haranguing the gullible, I prefer to think for myself and make up my own mind.
I did think of writing this to the magazine’s letters page but I suspect they’d think I’m some sort of crank for not going along with their party line. Oh, I do realise, by the way, that in reading this you too are reading someone else’s opinion, but at least you haven’t paid for it nor do I expect you to agree with me.
Rant mode off.