WalMart’s Sustainable Sour Cream Initiative

Here’s a video about how WalMart has reduced some of the environmental impacts of its house brand of sour cream. There’s obviously a ton of nasty dairy industry facts that could be covered that aren’t mentioned in this video. But this production is nevertheless interesting and well worth watching; there’s actually some real substance here.

I think one of the keys to being an effective animal advocate is to never come across as a knee-jerk vegan. That is, when talking about the issues, it’s important to have a handle on which aspects of animal agribusiness can be improved—and which elements simply cannot be fixed. I think a person is ultimately a far more persuasive advocate when he or she can watch a video like this and acknowledge where sensible points are being made, instead of just blowing it off with some sort of ad corporatum “WalMart sucks” attack.

It’s no doubt possible to eat small amounts of certain animal products without causing ruinous environmental consequences. Given that that’s the case, I think the best response to a video like this is to point out that every spoonful of this sour cream still comes from a cow who is destined for the slaughterhouse. And, for that matter, every drop of milk comes from a cow who has had her calf taken away within a day or two of birth—many times to be sold for a pittance to the veal industry. Link.