Sun, Aug 18, 2013 - Page 8 News List

[ LETTERS ]

Only a small percentage of people share my ethical concerns about this industry (I am a strict vegan), but the ecological and economic ramifications should be of real interest.

As with many other agricultural industries on the island, Taiwan’s pork production is not for export (or, we may say, it is not viable as an export industry, a profound problem that now haunts even Taiwanese rice-farming). In 2011, a puny 0.5 percent of Taiwanese pork was exported. (Meanwhile, Taiwan continues to import increasing quantities of pork, while producing more than twice the rate of pork per person than Korea or Japan!)

The industrialization of poultry farming has also increased its output on the island and, similarly, Taiwan has increased its imports of poultry. Taiwanese are eating enormous numbers of dead birds, compared to nearby South Korea and Japan.

The UN has repeatedly drawn attention to the environmental implications of these industries, in terms of land use, water use, even air pollution and increasing rates of disease.

The statistical charts I made to illustrate this problem are at the following links (all sources are either official FAO data, or else ROC Department of Agriculture data):

http://vegan-mind-tricks.tumblr.com/post/57790237292/taiwan-korea-and-japan-paradise-for-some-the

http://vegan-mind-tricks.tumblr.com/post/57639878082/ive-mentioned-taiwan-as-both-vegan-paradise-and

I would encourage your readers and your journalists to take an interest in this changing aspect of the economy, ecology and culture of Taiwan.

Eisel Mazard

Perpignan, France

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