Food Industry

Published on October 8th, 2008 | by Alex Felsinger


Haggis Could Vanish Due to Climate Change

Yes, haggisminced sheep organs mixed with onions, oatmeal, and spices, and then boiled inside the sheep’s stomachcould be the latest victim of global warming.

A vital ingredient to make the traditional Scottish dish is becoming increasingly hard to find: sheep lung. Many sheep have been infected with Lung Worm, which does not affect the rest of the sheep’s body, does render the lungs inedible.[social_buttons]

“Lung worm has been at a very low level and did not cause serious problems in sheep but with the changing climate and availability of the parasite it is becoming a problem,” said Sandy Clark, a veterinarian at the Scottish Agricultural College in Thurso.

But haggis fans need-not worry. Scottish butchers are sourcing their sheep lungs from Irish farms instead, where Lung Worm has not been a problem. However, acquiring the lungs from farther away certainly will not help stop climate change, the root of the spread, according to Clark.

Actually, a bigger source of the problem is the meat itself. For those who want to eat haggis and have their planet too, vegetarian versions are easy to prepare and even available canned and ready to serve.

Photo Credit: Tessa Watson on Flickr under Creative Commons license.

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About the Author

is primarily concerned with animal welfare, wildlife conservation, and environmental justice. As a freelance writer in San Francisco, he leads a deliberately simplistic and thrifty lifestyle, yet still can’t help gawking at the newest green gadgets and zero-emission concept cars.

7 Responses to Haggis Could Vanish Due to Climate Change

  1. Melisser says:

    Oh my word, that is hideous!

  2. David Swanson says:

    Hmmm… “Vegetarian haggis” is an oxymoron. I hope I never live to see a “traditional” Burns’ Supper at which vegetarian haggis is served. I’d rather have read an article that addressed the issue in a less biased way. The author’s viewpoint is too enforced. “For those who want to eat haggis and have their planet too…” Really? That sounds too much like a PETA ad. There’s to much political jargon in this little article. Stick to the straight facts.

    But that is just what I think, and you wanted to know!

  3. I’m not a huge fan of haggis, despite being Scottish, but my older son and my husband enjoy it.
    However – to suggest vegetarian haggis is not necessarily a great idea. Until yesterday, I’d never even *heard* of anyone who could cope with vegetarian haggis. Even my husband, who will do anything rather than throw food out – put his veg haggis in the bin.
    Yesterday, I heard of a person who had enjoyed a meal with vegetarian haggis – that’s my first ever!

    Haggis is becoming more and more common in various guises – “sausage” rolls, stuffing for various meat dishes, pasties, etc.
    Again, I haven’t personally heard of any of these being vegetarian.

    It’s like suggesting a Lancashire Hotpot or a Cornish Pasty, or Irish Stew – without any meat.
    You know – that main ingredient.

  4. Emmy says:

    Vegetarian haggis? Along with scrapple, hot dogs, and spam, this has to be the last food I’d expect any vegetarian to get a craving for..

  5. Pingback: British Poll Shows Many Meat-Eaters Think Pigs Have Wings – Eat Drink Better

  6. Pingback: Can Pigs Fly? – climate change and environmental news

  7. Maggie says:

    Haggis could vanish…Hmmmmm…That’s not a problem for me.

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