Thursday, January 17, 2019

eat your road kill, dear

During a recent trip to Fairbanks, my hometown, I asked locals why Alaska’s roadkill program has been so successful for so long. “It goes back to the traditions of Alaskans: we’re really good at using our resources,” the Alaska state trooper David Lorring told me. Everyone I talked to – biologists, law enforcement, hunters and roadkill harvesters – agreed: it would be embarrassing to waste the meat. In the past few years, a handful of states, including Washington, Oregon and Montana, have started to adopt the attitude that Alaskans have always had toward eating roadkill. A loosening of class stigma and the questionable ethics and economics of leaving dinner to rot by the side of the road have driven acceptance of the practice in the lower 48.
Or, as the proverb has it, "Waste not, want not." Those with a taste for humming-bird tongues may feel vindicated at their heights (only the less-affluent and less-washed would eat road kill), but food is food, whether the flatware is silver or toll. Strange to think that supermarket kill is acceptable, but what fell to the macadam is somehow less tasty and/or nutritious.

Moose, if I recall, is not the tastiest of meats.

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