This week’s upcoming Torah portion says, “every moving thing that lives shall be
food for you,” but at least one rabbi is looking to limit meat
Meatless Mondays may be on their way to the Knesset, thanks to MK
Rabbi Dov Lipman (Yesh Atid) and health activist Miki Haimovich.
and Haimovich, who resigned from her post as a Channel 10 News anchorwoman in
June 2011 and advocates healthy eating, decided to establish a Knesset Meatless
Mondays Caucus this weekend.
Meatless Mondays is an initiative that began
in the US, meant to reduce meat consumption by 15 percent to improve personal
health and the environment.
“I decided to form the Meatless Mondays
Caucus with a look at the long-term, and an understanding that we must act to
protect the environment,” Lipman said. “One day without meat doesn’t sound like
a lot, but together we can make a big, significant change.”
explained that “Earth’s resources are limited, and we must protect them for
According to a Knesset Research and Information
Center document, Israel is 12th place in national consumption of meat, with a
yearly average of 18 kg. per person.
The document added that the UN
estimated in 2006 that the meat industry is responsible for 18 percent of
greenhouse- gas emissions caused by human activity. This has a significant
effect on Israel’s carbon footprint, the Research and Information Center
Haimovich expressed hope that cutting meat out of the Knesset
cafeterias’ menu for one day a week will help raise awareness of the
“Meatless Mondays is a way to raise discussions on the different
aspects of sustainable food, and to promote a healthier lifestyle,” Haimovich
Lipman hopes to recruit MKs from every faction to the
MK Tamar Zandberg (Meretz), who is a vegan, requested earlier
this year that the Knesset add vegan options to the Knesset cafeterias’ menus
and provide soy milk.
Now, she says, Knesset directorgeneral Ronen Plot
told her that the next tender for a catering service will require
“I’m in favor of Meatless Mondays and think that there should be
non-meat options every day,” Zandberg stated.
Animal rights group
Anonymous for Animal Rights said that “since the meat industry is one of the
central causes of the environmental crisis, decreasing meat intake is a simple
and effective way for every one of us to contribute to the global battle against
The organization added that if less meat is eaten, fewer
animals will be imprisoned under harsh conditions in factory farms.
‘vegetarian day’ every week is an opportunity to have a more varied diet, eat
more fruits, vegetables, beans and grains, and improve our health,” Anonymous
for Animal Rights added. “The UN and government agencies in Sweden, the UK,
Germany and Australia already officially recommended reducing meat consumption
for health and environmental reasons. We commend MK Lipman on his initiative,
and hope that the Knesset cafeterias will join this important project.”
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