We've reached the end of our attempt to go vegetarian and vegan. Find out how we, and the GOOD community, did.
Thirty days ago the GOOD staff and community undertook the June GOOD challenge to go vegetarian. Some of us decided on pescetarian, others said they'd only eat meat on the weekends, and still others went totally vegan—the point was to limit meat consumption for the greater good. Four weeks later, we do believe this challenge was the best yet.
Throughout the process, we wrote about the issues surrounding our new diets. We covered vegan and vegan-carnivore sex, questioned the environmental impact of animal agriculture, and wondered why we don't eat golden retrievers. And just so we didn't come off as biased, we also heard the case for why it might actually be great to eat meat, just as long as you do it appropriately.
The GOOD community's participation was fantastic. Throughout the past month, dozens and dozens of people have used our #30DaysofGOOD hashtag to share meal ideas, show us pictures of their veggie food, and offer moral support to those of us teetering on the edge of a nice burger or delicate wedge of sashimi:
Our in-house participation was similarly enthusiastic. Twenty-four members of the GOOD staff stuck to their vegetarian/vegan pledges for the whole month of June—the only two to drop out did so for health reasons—and most of us found it to be pretty damn easy, save for one horrible incident involving mystery meat and a dimly lit Korean restaurant. One or two people have even said they might be total converts to vegetarianism.
Nice feelings are great, but we also wanted to quantify just how valuable our staff's vegetarianism was. After doing some quick Googling and number-crunching, we discovered that, if we add up all of our 24 staffers' meatless days (586), the GOOD offices alone reduced the amount of land needed to grow feed by almost 105,000 square feet and saved nearly 674,000 gallons of water. (If you'd like to know how we arrived at those numbers, or calculate your own efforts, go here.)
All in all, we think everyone did a pretty great job this month. So great, in fact, that if you're hankering for a steak tonight at midnight, you should maybe go ahead and order one—or don't. And don't forget to check back tomorrow to see what our July challenge is.