The taboo against beef eating among the Hindus is superstition.
On the way to Hong Kong I sat next to a non-meat-eating Indian on the plane. He explained to me how he could not eat cows because they are sacred and also helped them historically to work the land and they were almost like dogs are to Americans, part of the family.
Different strokes for different folks.
In the Vedas, the Sanskrit word "gau" has more than 30 contextual meanings most which deal with lofty states of consciousness.
However, the ignorant Hindu masses infer the word 'gau" to mean a cow, the animal. But, at the same time, in the Vedas, as far my knowledge goes, certain seers like Manu have warned against killing of cows for reasons pertaining to its supposed benevolence and due to its so-called spiritual qualities in the animal kingdom.
If a person eats meat, then he should go the whole hog and eat any thing that walks on fours.
Meat is simply a source of proteins among other nutrients.
I am against cruelty to animals.