I’m not going to preach about how meat is bad for you- because it isn’t all that bad for you… naturally, humans are made to eat both meat and plants (if you look at our tooth structure). Athought our canines have evolved to be very small and would do us very little good to just rip the hide of an animal, let alone help us kill them. However, the way in which our meat animals are raised and the large amounts of hormons they are given are NOT good for us… no matter which way you look at it. However, some people are not as fond as animals as I am, but the animals you are eating are not healthy themselves. And they are full of hormones. This is not healthy, or even safe for humans to consume. How do they get away with this? The meat industry is big, they are huge and powerful. And the change to the animal’s care while alive has slowly changed for maximum profits. Farms are no longer Betsy the cow with Farmer John (unfortuantely). Now cows, chickens, turkies, pigs, etc are all confined to small spaces in large numbers.
Many of these animals cannot lie down and have a hard time even turning around because they are packed so tightly. To clean their pens is time consuming and hard with such large numbers of animals- as a result many of these pens are cleaned once every two years or so (once a year if the animals are lucky). You might be saying- the animals would DIE if kept in this kind of environment… and your right. They would (if they weren’t fed amazingly high amounts of antibiotics to keep them alive for the first 5 or 6 months of life). Even with the heavy doses of antibiotics, these animals would still die if kept in these conditions. But they are slaughtered at a very young ages to make a maximum profit. Don’t believe me (or don’t want to)??? Just remember- you really are what you eat. And the health of the animals you eat (and the amounts of antibiotics they ingest) is passed on to you. Cooking unhealthy meat will not solve the problem. Here are some more horrifing facts on the meat industry: 1) To save money, spare animal parts that cannot be used for dog, cat or human food are ground up and fed to the cows, pigs, etc… Cows used to be fed cows and this is where mad cow disease originated. (Yes- Mad cow disease came to be because of the horrible ways we raise our cattle!) To try to avoid this- the meat industry thinks they are doing good by feeding cow parts to chickens & pigs and then turning around and feeding the chickens & pigs to the cows instead. (it is just one big happy circle… but let’s not think about that… because it saves the farms money… right?!) Not to mention that all of these animals are strict vegetarians and their systems are not made to digest meat. 2) The USDA recomends 4 whole inches of feeding space per chicken. That means 4 chickens cramed in a 16″ wide cage. Think about it… measure it if you want. It is a very, very scary thought. 3) Chickens and pigs are kept in SUCH small quarters that they have to have their beaks and teeth clipped in order to prevent them from hurting their cagemates. Domestic pigs and chickens are very docile creatures… but these small enclosures make these animals very aggressive in attempts to fight for space, food and breating room. 4) Cows and pigs are hung upside down by their rear legs alive before being killed. Some are skinned ALIVE… Many chickens are hung upside down by their feet and boiled ALIVE in the slaughter houses. This happens on a regular basis. Inspectors at slaughterhouses usually inspect hundreds of animals every hour… do you really think they can throughly inspect your meat when they have to do each animal so quicly? 5) Dairy cows are deemed “past maximum production” at only 4 to 5 years. They are then sent off to the slaughter house usually. However, a cow has a 20 to 25 year lifespan if properly cared for. 6) “… another vet said that a sustained feed lot diet would ‘blow out their livers’ and kill them” (www.hsus.org). This quotation refers to the diet that are fed to cows on the factory farms. They are fed diets of corn instead of grass. Feeding diets of corn allows farmers to keep their cows in confinded enclosures without any room for grazing. Corn is too rich of a diet for cows and these grain diets will blow out a cow’s liver if fed long enough. Their stomachs are made to digest grass and grass alone- they are grazing animals. However, if farmers were to feed grass diets- not only would they have to have large pastures for the cows to graze in, but it would also take longer for the cows to reach an ideal slaughter weight. And “the modern meat industry has devoted itself to shortening a beef calf’s allotted time on earth” (Micheal Pollan)