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Manger du veau :oui ou non?

Dans sa rubrique cuisine ce matin dans le Guardian Magazine Hugh Fearnley-Whittingstall, chef célèbre,  prétend qu'il est plus moral de manger certains types de veau que de n'en pas manger du tout. Les Anglais sont relativement frileux à cet égard, considérant l'élevage du veau comme inhumain. Selon le Meat and Livestock Commission en 2006 1% seulement des Britanniques consommaient du veau. Vu qu'on abat 250 000 veaux à la naissance puisque il's ne servent à rien dans la production laitière, vaut-il mieux les élever d'une manière humaine pour les consommer?

Hugh F-W ne fait que nous rappeler ce qu'il avait dit en 2006, avec Janet Street-Porter, dans un article de l'Independent. Il a également fait campagne sur la question dans sa série télévisée.

En Angleterre il existe des producteurs de "veau rosée" (rosé veal or rose veal) qui élèvent du veau humainement, même en leur donnant dans certains cas un peu de place à l'extérieur pour errer. Les bêtes sont abattues à l'âge d'au moins six mois, c'est-à-dire plus âgé qu'un porc ou qu'un agneau typique. Les autres veaux sont abattus à la naissance ou vont à l'exportation en Europe (les Italiens et les Néerlandais aont amateurs du veau) où les conditions d'élevage sont soi-disant plus cruelles.

Est-ce que les jeunes bovins sont moins bien traités en France? Pas forcément. Selon la PMAF (Protection modiale des animaux de la ferme) des progrès ont été faits grâce à la réglementation européenne, mais que les conditions varient trop, par exemple en ce qui concerne la literie dans les cases.

Selon eux, "les veaux sont enlevés à leur mère un ou deux jours après la naissance, puis sont isolés. Cette technique permet de commercialiser tout le lait que produit la vache. La séparation du veau de sa mère impose un stress important à la fois pour la vache qui peut meugler pour appeler son veau pendant les deux jours qui suivent leur séparation et pour le veau lui-même. Dans la nature, le sevrage est une opération progressive et le veau peut téter jusqu’à l’âge de 8 mois."

Dans certains cas les veaux sont élevés biologiquement et peuvent même rester auprès de leur mère. Leur conseil: "...donnez votre préférence à la viande de veau biologique. Ne recherchez pas la viande de veau blanche; la viande de veau rosée, presque rouge, provient d'un animal en meilleure santé." (Cet article résume bien la question.) (Ce site pourraient choquer certains.)

Ma conclusion? Il vaut mieux manger un veau bien élevé que de supporter qu'il soit abattu à la naissance.


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