For decades we have steadily improved our methods of food production. The yields on our crops are significantly higher then they were 50 years ago with advances in pesticides, herbicides, fertilizers, genetically modified crops (GMOs), and irrigation systems using dams and wells. Our factory farming methods mean that we can maximize the amount of meat we can produce, by keeping animals in confined quarters, and force-feeding them foods and pumping them full of drugs for maximum meat production.
But at what cost? Our food supply is hugely contaminated with chemicals. Our rivers and streams are polluted with runoff, killing wildlife and dramatically changing the balance of ecosystems. Rivers no longer reach oceans because of the dams which divert water to the fields, and aquifers are drying up. Animals are kept in horrendous conditions, living short lives dominated by suffering. And pollution from chemicals and methane from animals continues the deterioration of the environment and makes a significant contribution to climate change.
Humans evolved as omnivores with a certain amount of meat in their diet, but today the consumption of meat is way beyond what our bodies were designed for. This not only has a negative effect on our health, but it has a devastating effect on our environment. Meat production requires significantly more food and water, and the methane produced by animals has one of the largest impacts on climate change. Only a small percentage of the corn that we grow ends up as corn on our tables, the huge majority is turned in to animal feed, and the rest goes to ethanol production.
Environmental Respect is one of the Core Principles of Nutopia which means that food production cannot be detrimental to the environment and animal farming must be respectful of the species we cultivate for food. There are no pesticides or herbicides in Nutopia, instead it relies on techniques such as crop rotation, green manure, compost, and biological pest control. Aquaponics facilities also make up a large percentage of the plant food production in Nutopia. All animals raised for meat are reared on farms where they roam free from cages or pens, they are treated only for their health instead of pumped full of steroids and antibiotics to maximize meat output, and they live long lives free from suffering until they are humanely euthanized. Animal populations on farms are right-sized for the optimal quality of life, so that the meat available is based on what can be produced in humane conditions, not on how many animals can be crammed in to a given area, and how much food and drugs can be forced in to them to get the maximum amount of meat in the shortest time.