Factory farming - feeding the world or cruelty to animals?

Lady - posted on 04/12/2010 ( 47 moms have responded )

2,136

73

221

http://www.libraryindex.com/pages/2170/F...

It's quite a long link so I'll do a brief synopsis;
Pros;- More meat produced for less resources used and less land and sold at a cheaper price. Plus the small independat farmer can get the backing of bigger corperations to keep them going.

Cons;- Animals have little space to move and live in. many are kept in unsanitary conditions. Disease spreads easier among the animals because they are all under the one roof and more waste is produced.

For me it's a hard one, although I don't like the thought of animals being treated badly we do need to feed the world and keep small farmers in business. I saw this topic on Opera a while ago and before hand I would have always said NO to factory farming but one farmer put forward some really good arguments. They showed his farm and although the animals were confinde they did have room to move and were clean and well taken care of. He said if all farms were to go free range then so many farmer would be forced out of business that it would be a struggle to then get all the meat produced.
I think there needs to be tighter regulations on the welfare of animals but I know this sounds really awful especially to all you vegetarians out there. In the end we are going to kill them and eat them.

MOST HELPFUL POSTS

Lady - posted on 04/13/2010

2,136

73

221

Last two deleted now BREAK - it's not going anywhere - Thank you! Ladies!!!

Carolee - posted on 04/13/2010

21,950

17

585

I just want to say... my husband is a butcher, and it all looks the same to him when he's cutting them up! There's really not that big of a difference between "free range" and "factory farmed". There are COMPANIES that are better, and he'll flat-out tell you which ones are the best, but for the most part, it's all the same by time it gets to him.

Heather - posted on 04/12/2010

525

20

18

I can see keeping these animals clean and free from disease...I dont get why people get so up in arms over the way livestock is treated...they are going to be slaughtered...their days are numbered...they are not pets. I feel sad when I hear about a puppy mill and I dont like to see domestic animals being abused, but we are talking about livestock here...which provides food for us humans. Personally, I would rather focus my energy towards protecting and helping...people! I am way more upset about the way people are treated all around the world, than the livestock.

Johnny - posted on 04/12/2010

8,686

26

322

Duh! Thanks for pointing that out. LOL.

Factory farms produce far far in excess of the needed wastes for crop manure. That excess waste is often washed untreated into the water supply. It pollutes rivers and lakes, washes into the oceans, and kills fish and shellfish. It also alters the natural bio-systems in those waterways leading to other problems like algae growth.

Rosie - posted on 04/12/2010

8,657

30

321

interesting article jocelyn. i'm a little conflicted on this one. i LOVE meat. will never go without it. i do think that as a society we need to start eating less red meat, eating more fish and vegetables. i think that would help immensely. grassfed cows are less apt to get e coli, than a grainfed cow. that is more sanitary, less costly, and better eatin too. and like that article said, even if we don't eat all the grain that we feed the cows, we could export it and make a lot of money off of it.

carols idea with consuming all of the animal is a good start, but i for one cannot eat organs or hooves. i have tried then. i've ate cow brains, cow tongue, chicken hearts, gizzards, liver all those things and i find them all reprehensible. not because of the cultural taboo either, they are purely disgusting to me. i won't even eat chicken skin, eeeww! but maybe if other people actually tried these things they might like them. i know my husband likes cow tongue, but there's no where to get it around here.



i feel that factory farming is a necessity, i just think there needs to be more sanitary conditions, more room, and they need to be taken care of. and the slaughter houses need to be kept cleaner as well and have more regulations. i saw something somewhere where cow shit, and prime time steaks were pretty much mingled together constantly. it disgusted me (obviously not enough to give up meat) and it makes me wonder what our standards are like for our meat plants. i'm more worried about those things than how many cows are living together as long as the other conditions are met.

47 Comments

View replies by

[deleted account]

I think factory farming is cruel and I don't eat meat because of it. I also only buy free range eggs. Human life is more important so I think it is sometimes necessary for feeding the world in places where food is in short supply and it needs to be produced quickly and cheaply, but I don't think developed countries have an excuse for continuing this practice.

Jocelyn - posted on 04/13/2010

5,165

42

275

Lol, cheese is the main reason I'm not completely vegan :P
Anyways, @ Jenny, put some eucalyptus oil on a few popsicle sticks and poke them in your garden ^_^

Rosie - posted on 04/13/2010

8,657

30

321

m best friend is a vegetarian and when she first started in highschool she was vegetarian, but anything that involved killing an animal to get it she wouldn't eat-like gelatin, or eggs, but she'd have dairy. vegan is really hard to keep up laci! i honestly don't know how anybody can go without cheese either LOL!!! i wiish vegetables tasted like meat-i'd be all over that!

Jenny - posted on 04/13/2010

4,426

16

129

I've been told I BBQ ike a man, I guess that's a compliment lol.



I haven't dressed an animal yet. The meat was from a family freind. I am willing to learn though, I'm not very squeemish about that stuff. I believe it is important to be able to provide for your family. If we (hypothetically) ran out of oil many people would be hooped trying to feed their families. I like to be as self sufficient as possible. Container gardening is another thing I'm going to try this year, just trying to figure how to keep the neighbourhood cats from shitting in it. My yard is not very big though so I'm going to grow just enough to make some salsa.

Lady - posted on 04/13/2010

2,136

73

221

I think if I had to hunt and prepare my own meat that would definatley make me vegetarian, your a strong woman Jenny and I'd love to taste your rib eye!

Jenny - posted on 04/13/2010

4,426

16

129

I was vegetarian for awhile too. I chose it because of health concerns in the meat. I discover I enjoy meat too much to cut it out. I grill the best rib eye you've ever had gauranteed.



Factory farms are definately a huge issue. I just wantched Food Inc. last night which demonstrates the scope of the problem. Those places are HUGE. It is impossible for smaller farms to compete. One of the chicken places was $500K in debt and only made $18K a year. The company's have so much power over them.



I have been making somewhat responsible choices about my food such as no pop or fast food for years now but it is really time to step it up.



So these will be my immediate changes:

- Purchase local produce primarily but organic exclusively, farmers market preferred over the veggie store

- Purchase meat from local suppliers, from hunting and for salmon from wild stock only.

- Meat portions are to be severly reduced but not eliminated

- No more canned food (I'm almost there now already)



I had a moose roast last night that I cooked in my slow cooker that was awesome. Deer are also plentiful around here. My partner has his hunting license and PAL and just need to buy our equipment and get out in the bush come hunting season. Meat doesn't come any more clean or natural than the stuff you get yourself. It gives you a whole new appreciation for where it truly comes from.

C. - posted on 04/13/2010

4,125

35

242

Well I'm sorry if I seemed snobby.. It wasn't my intention. I was just trying to avoid being attacked again.

Jocelyn - posted on 04/13/2010

5,165

42

275

@ Laci, I hate when that happens :P I just did that the other week...stupid protein bars lol
@ Christina. Thank you for your answer. I'm sorry you had such rotten luck. I wasn't asking to be intrusive or anything, I was honestly just curious and your first answer just seemed really snobby.

C. - posted on 04/13/2010

4,125

35

242

I did have a genuine reason for going back. I tried vegetarianism to lose weight initially when I was 15. Talked to my doctor and everything and he thought it would be a good idea to try it. Did that for a year and I got nowhere. Being a vegetarian didn't make me feel healthier at all- well, after the first couple months anyway. In fact, it made me feel very weak and nauseous all the time. I had tried many things so I wouldn't feel ill, I tried Boca burgers, Morning Star Farms (just about everything they made. I still eat Morning Star products for a quick snack or something, but Boca to this day makes me feel sick to my stomach). I tried some other brands that I cannot remember, but some of the products included vegetarian cheeses, vegetarian hot dogs, bacon, ground "beef", "turkey slices", you name it. It was a gradual progression. At first when I started, I felt great.. Then slowly got tired and couldn't do a lot of things.. It just wasn't "ME". Which is the point I was trying to make earlier w/o having to write so much b/c the last time I tried to write a lot in one post on this thread someone started bashing me b/c my wording wasn't to their liking. And I took iron supplements, calcium supplements and I ALWAYS take a daily multi-vitamin.. Nothing else helped.

LaCi - posted on 04/13/2010

3,361

3

171

hey technically a couple weeks ago I wasn't a vegetarian. I got addicted to those chocolate mini bites never checking that label... we all sin sometimes lol. I guess that was a second hiatus.

LaCi - posted on 04/13/2010

3,361

3

171

Yeah I started practicing vegan cooking to avoid the disaster. I try to do one different vegan meal per week to build up my recipe supply so I don't starve this time. I really am a cheese junkie though, so it's going to be rough.

Jocelyn - posted on 04/13/2010

5,165

42

275

Lol @ Laci. When I became vegetarian I jumped right into vegan without any real research, that also ended horribly :P Now I'm at a good almost-vegan spot
@ Christina "because" is not an answer. Very few people just try vegetarianism for the hell of it, and I was only wondering if maybe you had tried it for health reasons and didn't like how it made you feel, etc. I was thinking that you might have had a genuine reason for converting back.

LaCi - posted on 04/13/2010

3,361

3

171

thanks lol. I will definitely need it. Especially the convincing the boyfriend he can't even have the rennin free cheese.

Lady - posted on 04/13/2010

2,136

73

221

Vegan seems like such hard work - I really don't think I could be bothered lol!! Good luck to you though!

LaCi - posted on 04/13/2010

3,361

3

171

Jocelyn, I took a hiatus with the vegetarian thing. I did it for a few years in middle school, stopped in high school, went back in college. tried veganism and it was disastrous lol, i was very unprepared. Now it's permanent, the boyfriend is also a vegetarian now. My son is a vegetarian with us, although I'm not strict about what he eats elsewhere, I just want him to be aware of vegetarianism so he can make up his own mind about it. By the end of the year I'm in high hopes that we'll all be vegan though.

C. - posted on 04/13/2010

4,125

35

242

Jocelyn, I'm curious as to how my answer was not "proper"? I answered your question. It just wasn't for me.

[deleted account]

I think as long as the farms are clean, the animals have sufficient food and room that's fine with me. At the end of the day they are gonna be eaten. I went through the lets be a vegetarian phase when I was 11 when most people do I think lol. It lasted 3 month and I was back to eating meat, I just didn't see the point. I know lots of vegetarians and vegans are healthy but my mum's lodger is vegan and she looks like death and is always ill regardless of eating enough protein from other sources.

C. - posted on 04/13/2010

4,125

35

242

It's not just in script, LaCi. You obviously did not read the whole post. I said "For years I have had something wrong with me where I cannot concentrate and word things properly so other people can understand." When I said I haven't been able to word things properly for years so people can understand what I'm saying, I was talking about in person as well! Just ask my family and close friends. They'll tell you I have trouble with it. It's not that I don't try. I try very hard b/c I don't want there to be something wrong with me; I am TIRED of having things wrong with me (my Erb's Palsy included!) Just stay away from me in posts from now on.



And I do believe I said a disease, not a disorder. They are not exactly the same thing. Brain tumors (malignant AND benign) can cause problems with concentration and speech (in person or in script). So you're telling me that you wouldn't feel bad if you said that to someone that had brain tumors?

Lady - posted on 04/13/2010

2,136

73

221

Jocelyn - I was a vegetarian for 4 years then went back to eating meat. I was about 12 and just didn't like meat at all, I just couldn't stomach it, probably something to do with puberty quite often tastes change around that time. Anyway everyone said it was just a phase and I'd grow out of it but I didn't believe them. Then when I was about 16 I found I started craving meat again, chicken, bacon, steaks that sort of thing but because everyone had said it was a phase I didn't want to prove them right so started eating it sneakily when no one was watching. I met my now husband not to much later and never told him I'd been vegetarian so when we went to my house for dinner and my mum made me something different to everyone else he was a little confused. I told my mum not long after. There are still some typed of meat I wouldn't eat pork (except bacon), lamb, veal, vennison or any type of offel and I don't eat meat everyday, quite often we we go out I choose one of the vegetarian options on the menu but I wouldn't ever go back to being a vegeterian.

LaCi - posted on 04/13/2010

3,361

3

171

"Now, wouldn't you feel like shit if you said something like that to someone that had a diagnosed disease that made them speak that way? I swear.."



No actually I wouldn't, because there is no disorder to be diagnosed from a symptom of misusing words in script.



And little family farms are fewer and farther between every single day, because factory farms are putting them under. Farmers can no longer profit, they don't have the wages, the resources, or the manpower to effectively maintain crops without chemicals and animals with humanity, which is why labels are so much more expensive. Go to your local grocery store and see how many small farms are putting their meat on the shelves. You rarely even know what country or how many countries provided the meat in that package. If you aren't buying directly from a farm, or maybe buying Kobe beef, your animals were probably not treated humanely.



Even kosher companies don't abide by the necessary kosher rules against cruelty. Which is why I buy my raw vegetables. and Until people show support of humanely treated livestock with their wallets there will be no change.



We do not NEED meat, so these creatures are needlessly, and senselessly dying and being tortured. Even the american heart association advocates vegetarian diets. Its healthier for people, healthier for animals, and healthier for the planet.

C. - posted on 04/13/2010

4,125

35

242

LaCi, have you ever been to a farm? I have been to MANY farms and the people at those farms treat their animals just as well as their own children. I said that there were farms that mistreat animals and they shouldn't do that. And I take great offense to what you said. It takes time for me to figure out what I'm going to say and to write it on these boards. I wrote a lot more, but I edited it. You don't have to be so rude, LaCi. For years I have had something wrong with me where I cannot concentrate and word things properly so other people can understand. It started shortly after my dad died when I was 9, but that's really all I remember about when it started. I don't know why or how, I have never been diagnosed with anything, mainly b/c my mother never took me to a doctor for it thinking it would pass with time. It's been 12 years since my dad passed away. And whatever problem I have has STILL not gone away. Just bear with me please and stop being so rude! You don't know if there is something going on with someone all the time, you are not all-knowing. Now, wouldn't you feel like shit if you said something like that to someone that had a diagnosed disease that made them speak that way? I swear..

Jocelyn, it's really none of your business why I went back to eating meat, but I did it b/c it isn't me. I am a meat-eater, always have been a meat-eater and will always be a meat-eater. I wasn't trying to be rude to YOU, but in general I am tired of people saying that will make the world a better place.


THANK YOU, HEATHER!!!!! Well said!

Jocelyn - posted on 04/12/2010

5,165

42

275

@ Christina: Where the hell did I push my opinion on you? I stated facts.
Your rudeness aside, I am a bit curious as to why you are an ex-veggie. I've never met anyone who has converted back to an omnivore.

C. - posted on 04/12/2010

4,125

35

242

Yes, and another way of wording that is "SOME". What are you not getting?



YOU said I was turning a blind eye toward animal cruelty. I, in fact, did no such thing. I said the animals being mistreated needed to be helped.



I did not contradict myself. Please go back and read it again!

C. - posted on 04/12/2010

4,125

35

242

Um, have you ever been on a farm or worked on one?? Guess what the majority of a farm's fertilizer for their crops is.. *GASP* Manure!



And yes, it sounds disgusting and people probably won't ever eat produce again.. But as long as you know how to clean your veggies/fruits properly, you really shouldn't have a problem.

Johnny - posted on 04/12/2010

8,686

26

322

Christina, I was not referring to cruelty to animals. I was referring to all the other practices that virtually all factory farms use in producing their products. Those practices which could be said to define what it means to be a factory farm. Heavy use of antibiotics in the animals, high intensity waste production (lots of animals lots of poop) are just 2 of these issues. Both of these things cause problems for us as humans, aside from how the animals feel about it.

C. - posted on 04/12/2010

4,125

35

242

LaCi, you obviously need to open your eyes and read.. I never turned a blind eye to the cruelty of animals! I said there ARE farms that are cruel to animals and there are SOME THAT ARE NOT cruel to animals.. It's a pretty well-known fact, if you ever do unbiased research on the topic. And if you read the last part of my comment, I stated "You always hear about the animals (and that's fine, the ones that ARE being mistreated need to be helped) but you never hear about the farms that take care of their animals, either!"



**NOTICE THE PART IN PARENTHESES**



@Carol.. That is a pretty bold statement and not completely true. I said that the animals shouldn't be mistreated.. But again, there are SOME farms that are NOT cruel to animals and people need to realize that!





(@ All) Making general statements about ALL factory farming is just ridiculous! Not ALL of them are like that and you'd see it if you opened your biased eyes!

Johnny - posted on 04/12/2010

8,686

26

322

If compassion for other creatures is too much to ask, then think only of ourselves. Factory farming harms each and every one of us, especially the people that consume the meat. If you can only think of yourself, do so. Factory farming hurts you too.

LaCi - posted on 04/12/2010

3,361

3

171

"there are the ones that are cruel, yes, but there are just as many- if not more- farms that take special care to ensure that their animals have enough space to roam and sleep and that they are being fed properly and cleaned well. "





The majority of farms ARE cruel to animals, which is why labels are so important. Chicken that aren't free range are kept in spaces they can not move in, they are grown unnaturally and can not even support their body weight, they lay in filth waiting to be slaughtered, even free range only wander for a few hours per day. Pigs are slaughtered in mass quantities and in such terrible living conditions that it breeds disease which affects everyone within range via drinking water. They have massive boils and blisters covering their body because they are kept in unsanitary conditions. Chickens beaks are cut off so they can't attack each other in tiny closed quarters. Cows are fed foods they can not digest. THAT is the reality of factory farming. the VAST MAJORITY of farms are like this, this is the disgusting reality of factory farming.



No vegetarian here was pushing any agenda on anyone, simply stating their opinion. People who turn a blind eye to the filth and cruelty of factory farms make me sick.

C. - posted on 04/12/2010

4,125

35

242

Quite honestly, as an EX-Vegetarian, I am a little sick of Vegetarian/Vegans trying to push their opinion that everyone should cut meat out completely or almost completely in order for the world to be a better place. An this is not only in response to what Jocelyn wrote, this is in response to ALL Vegetarians that have voiced that same opinion before, on CoM and to me personally. I am just sick of it!

Do I eat meat? Heck yeah I do! With Scandinavian, Irish and Scottish in our family, we are a 'Meat and Potatoes' kind of people! Some people just love the taste of meat and all the begging and pleading in the world will not change other people's OPINIONS about their food.

Do I love animals? Yes! Do I love how animals are being treated?? Yes and No. Some farms actually take care of their animals. There are the ones that are cruel, yes, but there are just as many- if not more- farms that take special care to ensure that their animals have enough space to roam and sleep and that they are being fed properly and cleaned well.

I honestly hate this one-sided type of debate. You always hear about the animals (and that's fine, the ones that ARE being mistreated need to be helped) but you never hear about the farms that take care of their animals, either!

Kristin - posted on 04/12/2010

1,645

40

305

It's both. We somehow have gotten it into our heads that we must have meat with almost every meal. It probably started out as a statement of wealth and social status. But, as countries around the world are adopting this practice they are becoming less healthy. As a species we are meant to get most of our sustenance from fruits, veggies, nuts, some grains and meats. No, I am not a vegetarian. But I am trying to be more of a flexitarian. I prefer the taste of free range meat and am willing to pay the additional $$$ to get it, but it isn't a regular thing at our house. I also know that we've got a whole lot of people living on our planet in the best places to be farming, so there does need to be allowances given to feed these people.



When I shop, I go with what I know to be responsible practices for farming and fishing. I want to support people who are working to find the right balance between earnings statements and our environment.



Ultimately, I have to believe in quality over quantity and provide for my family accordingly.

Johnny - posted on 04/12/2010

8,686

26

322

I just wanted to say, please, DON'T EAT MORE FISH because of the need to move away from land mammal proteins. The oceans and fresh waters have been extensively over-fished worldwide. It is a problem as serious or perhaps more so than factory farming. The cost to our environment is drastic. And if we eat too much now, it is entirely possible that our grandchildren will not ever even get to try fish:

http://www.scientificamerican.com/articl...

Amy - posted on 04/12/2010

4,793

17

376

All the grain they feed one cow can feed how many people? I just think it's a bit crazy to go off and say that they're feeding the world with the meat that they are producing extra of which in turn eat more grain.....they eat 90 pounds of grain a day. Times how many cows? A human could survive with 3 cups. That could feed quite a few people. If they were worried about simple survival of other people, they'd send corn or cornmeal instead of steaks.

But this is just about supplying a luxury demand. "We need more cows for fast food at a lower cost so we make more money." That's all it's about.

LaCi - posted on 04/12/2010

3,361

3

171

Factory farming is disgusting. It is the reason I'm currently a vegetarian, and the reason I will soon be a vegan.

Johnny - posted on 04/12/2010

8,686

26

322

I am not a vegetarian, I do eat all types of animal proteins. However, I think that our consumption issues have a lot to do with these problems. First of all, people seek to put too much animal protein in their diet. It is not necessary to have some form or another at every meal. Think about it, people will eat sausages (pig) for breakfast, a hamburger (cow) for lunch, and some salmon for dinner. This is not at all required for our health, in fact, too much animal protein intake can be detrimental. So if people stopped eating so much, just because they could afford it, then we would not need to produce at the same levels.

Another issue is that we do not consume all of the animal. We waste a huge portion of what can be consumed on animals, because of our cultural taboos. Countries with healthier, non-factory farm systems more often consume all parts of the animal. The offal, the feet, the tongues, etc. Our culture used to do this, but the increased availability and cheaper costs of the "better" cuts of meat have lead to enormous waste.

Factory farming is not only unpleasant for the animals, but is harmful to the environment and to our health. The treatments for the health conditions that the animals get directly as a result of close confinement are transferred through their meat to our bodies. That means, when an animal is pumped full of antibiotics, you're eating them too.

I do care about the animals, but the problems with factory farming are so much greater than just animal welfare. Many factory farms do treat the animals well, but that does not mitigate the environmental damage and harm to the food chain that they do cause. I think the move to factory farming is yet another example of knowing the cost of everything and the value of nothing.

Amy - posted on 04/12/2010

1,761

18

250

I don't like animals being treated that way, and I love my meat! My family is also on a small food budget so we buy what is on sale. I will never stop eating meat, I have, in the past though, cut down and started eating the "correct" size more often.

Lyndsay - posted on 04/12/2010

2,008

19

175

I think its unfortunate that these poor creatures are born as livestock. Maybe they'll have better luck in the next life. People need to eat, plain and simple. I think that the most efficient way to do this is the best way. However, I think that ALL farms should be up to standard when it comes to keeping animals clean and disease-free.

Jocelyn - posted on 04/12/2010

5,165

42

275

In my vegetarian opinion (lol) the world would be a better place if everyone cut meat out of their diet or at least drastically minimized their meat consumption. (I won't list why, but here's a link to a good article about it if you are curious. http://www.news.cornell.edu/releases/aug... )

But since I know that that won't happen anytime soon...

I am generally against factory farming, but only because of the living conditions. Some smaller farms are just as guilty as being cruel as the large farms. I think that there needs to be greater emphasis on the animal welfare (both large and small farms alike). Free range isn't the be all or end all; they don't have to be running around ALL the time. What matters more to me is that they are kept in sanitary conditions, they are allowed to move around, they are not so crowded that they are getting crushed, they have proper food (no animal bi products), they receive proper health care and are treated in a humane manner. That is much more important to me than if the farm has a few hundred heads, or a few thousand.

Join Circle of Moms

Sign up for Circle of Moms and be a part of this community! Membership is just one click away.

Join Circle of Moms