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Between the Lines: Nicolette Hahn Niman ’89 defends beef–but prefers not to eat it

Kalamazoo College alumna Nicolette Hahn Niman with a cow

Nicolette Hahn Niman ’89 has written a second book: Defending Beef: The Case for Sustainable Meat Production. Her first book was Righteous Porkchop: Finding a Life and Good Food Beyond Factory Farms.

Kalamazoo College alumna Nicolette Hahn Niman ’89 is an environmental lawyer, rancher, food activist, author, and vegetarian who has published Defending Beef: The Case for Sustainable Meat Production, published by Chelsea Green. It’s her second book.

Wait…a vegetarian who has written a book in defense of beef? Oh, yes!

Hahn Niman’s first book, Righteous Porkchop: Finding a Life and Good Food Beyond Factory Farms (William Morrow, 2009), took on big factory farms, charging them as major polluters and a detriment to global climate. That book also described how she met, married, and went into business with California cattle rancher Bill Niman.

In Beef, which she subtitles “The Manifesto of an Environmental Lawyer and Vegetarian Turned Cattle Rancher,” she addresses health issues, climate change, water supply, biodiversity, overgrazing, world hunger, the morality of eating meat, and more, the result of meticulous research and day-to-day life on an active livestock ranch.

Beef, Hahn Niman believes, can play an important role in ending world hunger and help restore a balanced climate.

Book cover of 'Defending Beef'Nicolette Hahn Niman earned B.A. degrees in biology and French at K before earning a aw degree (cum laude) from the University of Michigan.

She served two terms on the Kalamazoo City Commission, worked as an attorney for the National Wildlife Federation, and was senior attorney for Robert F. Kennedy Jr.’s Waterkeeper Alliance, an environmental organization where she was in charge of the organization’s campaign to reform the concentrated livestock and poultry industry.

Recently, Nicolette Hahn Niman was interviewed by Kalamazoo-based WMUK (FM 102.1) writer and book reviewer Zinta Aistars (a former K staffer!) on her program Between the Lines that airs every Tuesday at 7:50 a.m., 11:55 a.m., and 4:20 p.m. Listen to the interview and read more about Hahn Niman here: http://wmuk.org/post/between-lines-defending-beef.