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I created this video to illustrate the main issues with factory farming. These issues are the deplorable conditions in which food animals are kept in the United Stated of America. Which leads to the animals becoming ill, lowering the quality of the meat. The over-use of antibiotics in factory farms. These antibiotics are needed to keep the animals from developing even more infections, but they also spread antibiotic resistant strains of bacteria, such as MRSA, which can then infect human populations. Factory farming is bad for the environment. It releases massive amounts of carbon dioxide (CO2) and other greenhouse gasses, contributing to global warming. It also polluted local water supplies, both near the feedlots, and where the corn that goes into the animal feed is grown. Workers in slaughter houses are mistreated. Most are immigrants who are illiterate in English (and often in Spanish). They are not unionized, and the slaughter houses work to maintain a close to 100 percent turnover rate. They keep the turnover rate so high because it keeps their costs low because they don’t have to provide workers with benefits, such as medical coverage. The turnover rate means that most workers are unaccustomed to the work. In a workplace where most workers are working knives free-handed, quickly and in close quarters, this leads to injuries, which workers are encouraged to hide so the company does not have to pay for their medical care. Unpracticed workers are also more likely to make mistakes which lead to fecal matter from the hides or intestines of the animals contaminating the meat. This leads to the presence of Salmonella and Pathogenic E. Coli, which cause illness in humans.

Factory Farmed meat is bad for all involved, both in its production and in its consumption, and because of the environmental damage it causes, it is bad for those who never eat factory farmed meat. We can all do our part to help though. Everyone can choose to eat less meat or to eat organic meat from small farms, which is raised in a much better manner. and everyone can become involved in creating regulations that lesson the impact of factory farming, and work towards eradicating it altogether.

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Since 1985 Meatout has been celebrated on or around March 20th. Meatout is a huge educational campaign about vegetarianism. This grassroots campaign cites the cruelty to animals in factory farming, the environmental impact of factory farming, and the health benefits of a meat-free diet as reasons for “kicking the meat habit”. They also provide educational services on how to be vegetarian by providing meat-free recipes. Meatout invites everyone to go meat-free for a day every March 20th, and encourages people to make a commitment to participate in Meatout Mondays by going meat-free every Monday. This makes Meatout unique, as other organizations insist that to make a difference you must be a full-time vegetarian.

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From Calf to Hamburger, Where Does Meat Come From?

We all know that some of our food is imported from other countries. but did you know that is includes meat? 16% of Beef sold in the Us is imported from Canada, Mexico, Australia and New Zealand, and 6% of Pork eaten in the US is imported from Canada and Denmark. (University of Arkansas, Division of Agricultural)

At first, most of us find the idea of eating meat from another country disconcerting, but these facts may make you even more weary of the meat that originated the in US:

  • A single feedlot usually has up to 100,000 cattle
  • Many slaughter houses in the US process 300-400 cattle an hour, twice the rate of anywhere else in the world. This leads to mistakes that cause contamination from fecal matter from the digestive tract or hide of the animal//
  • The turnover rate for workers in slaughter houses is between 75 and 100 percent a year. This leads to unskilled workers who make more mistakes, which could potentially contaminate the meat
  • All hamburger used by McDonald’s in the US comes from just 5 ground-beef suppliers
  • The top four meatpacking firms in the US have control of over 85% of the market
  • The centralized meat processing system means that it is difficult to trace tainted meat to it’s origin, and by the time a recall has been issued (if the source is found), most of the bad meat has been consumed
  • These huge companies have close ties to those creating food-safety policies and have more control over these policies than the American voters
  • Almost all ground beef in the US has some level of Salmonella
  • The USDA does not have the power to instate a mandatory recall of contaminated meat

Source: Frontline interview of Eric Schlosser, author of Fast Food Nation

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CIWF and the Ethical Matrix

Compassion In World Farming (CIWF) was established in 1967 by Peter Roberts, a dairy farmer, because he and his wife were becoming concerned about animal welfare in the system of factory farming that was becoming more and more prevalent. The organization, which began based in their home, now has offices in Ireland, France, and Holland and representatives in seven other countries. CIWFs mission is to increase animal well being worldwide, and put a stop to factory farming. CIWF continuously campaigns against practices such as veal crates and long-distance transport of animals.

CIWF also provides many educational resources, including the Ethical Matrix. The Ethical Matrix was written for CIWF by Professor Ben Mepham of Nottingham University. This interactive program explores the ethical issues of factory farming in respect to the animals, the environment, the farmer, and the consumer.

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Would You Eat A Bug?

Most people find the idea of eating an insect disconcerting, but David Gracer believes that we should be doing just that. He considers insects to be an important food source that is often overlooked. Insects are an excellent source of nutrients, and are eaten in many cultures throughout the world. They also have a much smaller environmental impact than larger animals such as pigs and cattle. So next time you’re looking for an environmentally sustainable meal, consider eating some bugs.

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About This Blog

This blog is about the production of meat in our industrialized world, its impact on the environment, human health, and poverty.

 The livestock industry produces large amounts of gasses responsible for global warming and acid rain. And is responsible for massive amounts of deforestation. Livestock production also releases toxins into the environment, many of which then make their way into water and food.

The turn to large, industrialized, farms has decreased the number of small farms, and made it harder for small farmers to earn a living. This has increased the amount of poverty world-wide.

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