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Cards on the table. I am not a vegan. Not even a vegetarian, though it wouldn’t take much to make me convert. Some years ago, when I was an industrial analyst at the largest Afrikaans stockbroking firm in the world, I was invited to visit a meat processing plant in the Vaal Triangle. It was a thoroughly unpleasant experience, seeing these cattle being shot, then lifted up and skinned.

The smell of death was pervasive and I just wanted to escape. My chance came when the trip leader exclaimed “en nou did avfaal poel” — literally translated “and now the offal pool”. It was all I could do to stop vomiting and I scarpered back to the bus pronto, politely declining my bag of meat goodies en route. I didn’t touch meat for about six months after that traumatic experience and even then, it’s largely been white meat, such as chicken and fish, rather than red meat for me...

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