Most Americans do agree that the animals we raise for food should deserve to live life without cruelty and abuse, Most farm animals raise in the US suffer in conditions that most consumers would not accept if they could see them. Our meat and most derivatives of the animals like butter, milk, etc come from large industrial farms where efficiency trumps welfare and animal are paying the price.
Why should we eat this type of food?
Even though I understand that we need to feed millions of people, I do feel strongly that we can’t be this insanely irresponsible to our industrial farm animals, the more stress these animals get the worst it gets to us the product, cows release cortisol hormone while under extreme stress condition, the hormone gets passed to the people that eat it, so my questions is – Are we eating or taking all these cortisol hormones also?
Of course we are!
Bad for Animals, Bad for Us
Animals are not the only ones suffering because of these unnatural, inhumane conditions. Human health, the environment and farmers are being hurt by the intensive farming systems employed on factory farms.
While most Americans expect our laws to protect farm animals, the reality falls far short. Animals raised for food are among the least-protected class of animals in our nation.
Although there are no federal laws protecting animals on farms, two federal laws cover farm animals during transport and slaughter. Tragically, these two laws exempt all poultry species, which make up 95% of land animals killed for food.
- Transport: The 28-Hour Law requires animals transported across state lines for slaughter— by means other than water or air—to be unloaded every 28 hours for rest, food and water. This law is weakened by loopholes, lack of enforcement and low fines.
- Slaughter: The Humane Methods of Livestock Slaughter Act requires that livestock be quickly rendered insensible to pain before being slaughtered. In addition to excluding poultry, the law exempts certain forms of religious slaughter, such as Kosher and Halal.
Because federal law fails to protect most farm animals, state laws are these animals’ last defense. The majority of U.S. states expressly exempt farm animals, or certain standard farming practices, from their anti-cruelty provisions, making it nearly impossible to provide even meager protections. While in common industry use, these exempt farming practices are often shockingly cruel. Although a few states include farm animals in at least some of their anti-cruelty laws, such laws are rarely enforced in favor of farm animals.
- Ag-Gag: Over the past few years, “ag-gag,” or anti-whistleblower bills, have been appearing in state legislatures across the country. While crafted to appear reasonable, these measures are designed to prevent the exposure of troubling practices at agricultural facilities. Instead of making it illegal to abuse animals, these laws make it illegal to document and report abuse.
Learn where your state stands on ag-gag.
- Confinement Bans: On the bright side, an increasing number of states are banning certain extreme methods of confinement, such as battery cages for hens and gestation crates for pigs.
Learn where your state stands on confinement.
- Right to Farm: Rather than reform destructive practices, corporate agribusiness is responding by pushing “Right to Farm” (RTF) laws that greatly limit the ability of states to regulate conditions on farms, including the cruel confinement of farm animals.
Learn more about Right to Farm laws.