Where I work, I’ve actually seen some pretty creative menu items coming from the food service staff. For example, recently it was Mediterranean day and, coincidentally, right after I made a Lebanese rice and lentil dish called Moujadarah, it showed up in the cafeteria. Since I didn’t bring my lunch that day, I enjoyed many of the Mediterranean choices, which included falafel, pita, hummus, and Greek salad (as well as the Moujadarah).
As a result, I’ve been scanning the menu each week and this time I saw a word I had never seen before: flexitarian. With all the reading about food and meat and my search for vegetarian dinner recipes, you’d think I’d have come across it by now.
So I looked it up. Wikipedia’s definition for flexitarianism is this: “a semi-vegetarian diet focusing on vegetarian food with occasional meat consumption. A self-described flexitarian seeks to decrease meat consumption without eliminating it entirely from his or her diet.”
I wondered, is that me? As I’ve said numerous times, I am a true carnivore. And I do believe grassfed meat, as a commodity, does not do the carbon footprint damage that feedlot meat does. But grassfed meat is not cheap. One way to balance the cost of good food, such as local grassfed meat, is to balance carnivorous choices with vegetarian choices. Hence, the flexitarian–flexible enough to eat from both the animal world and the plant world!
Back to Wikipedia: If you scroll down the webpage you’ll see the “criticism” section: “Flexitarianism is often criticized by vegetarians or vegans who assert that one cannot be vegetarian only occasionally.” The Wiki criticism sounds like flexitarians are wishy-washy. I beg to differ. Based on my points above, I think a flexitarian approach is meaningful and deliberate.
Here’s another story on MSNBC’s website about flexitarianism.
What do you think?