Vegetarian Woman Becomes A Butcher After Eating A Real Beef Burger

An Australian woman who was a staunch vegetarian for years became a butcher and a meat-eater after eating a beef burger while pregnant with her third child. However, she’s still an ardent supporter of animal welfare.

  1. Tammi Jonas became a vegetarian in the ’70s. After reading a book about the terrible conditions animals at slaughter farms experience, Tammi stopped eating meat altogether and instead opted for a plant-based life.
  2. She had to re-think her way of eating after becoming “dangerously anemic.” While pregnant with her third child, Tammi became seriously anemic despite taking supplements and eating plenty of iron-rich foods. Her solution? Meat! “I was at work one day and just thought: ‘a burger would fix this,'” she told 10 Daily.
  3. That burger immediately changed her diet. Tammi went back to eating various meat after that initial burger, but she insists she still cares about animals. “I went back to red meat, so beef and lamb, once a week throughout the pregnancy, and it was some years longer before I had any pork or poultry,” she said. “I never thought it was immoral to take an animal’s life for food – I’ve always been comfortable with my place in the food chain, but I thought it was immoral to treat [animals] cruelly, to not allow them to go outside and breathe fresh air and to be confined in crowds in sheds.”
  4. She became a butcher to improve animal welfare. Tammi and her husband realized that by running a small-scale farming operation, they could raise and slaughter meat in a way that was more ethical and humane than larger meat producers. “My journey from mindless industrial eater to vegetarian to ethical omnivore led me all the way to become a pig farmer to contribute to the growing movement to get pigs and poultry back out of sheds and onto paddocks,” she writes on her website. “We now grow, butcher and cure all of our meat, and serve 80 households from our thriving community-supported agriculture (CSA) farm.”
  5. Tammi doesn’t believe killing animals for food is unethical. “Some people will draw an ethical line that killing is bad. But I don’t believe that – I don’t think killing an animal for consumption is unethical if it had a good life,” she told Daily Mail Australia.
  6. She wants to use her story to promote an upcoming documentary. Tammi took to Facebook after her story went viral to highlight the issue she cares about: animal welfare. An upcoming Australian documentary called Eating Animals provides “a must-see look at the ills of industrial livestock production” and is a must-see for anyone who cares about animals, Tammi believes. She also provided a link to buy tickets to an upcoming screening and encouraged others to spread the word.
Jennifer Still is a writer and editor with more than 10 years of experience. The managing editor of Bolde, she has bylines in Vanity Fair, Business Insider, The New York Times, Glamour, Bon Appetit, and many more. You can follow her on Twitter @jenniferlstill