Most are raised to be killed. Some are more profitable alive. Egg laying chickens Sheep for wool Horses, mules & burros for their physical abilities Bees for honey Farm animals are big business.
2007 USDA Animal Health Report p. 53 Overview of U.S. Livestock, Poultry, and Aquaculture Production in 2007
more farm animals were living in the United States than there were humans on Earth. In 2007
2008 Gallup Poll on Treatment of Animals See Figure 4.2 on page 55 in your text.
U.S. Livestock Business Critics Farm animals are well treated. Farm animals must be thriving because there are so many of them. American Meat Institute – 2009 “Optimal handling is ethically appropriate, creates positive workplaces and ensures higher quality meat products.” High productivity is an indicator of the efficiency of the system, not the well being of the animals in the system. Undercover footage which is the rule and not the exception. Bottom of page 53
2005 – Compassion Over Killing undercover video prompted USDA to do its own investigation, resulting in the law applying to livestock transported in trucks too. 28 Law of 1873 – Federal – only rail
Top of page 55 – paragraph … “ The law required slaughter by humane methods at slaughterhouses subject to federal inspection. This meant…” Humane Slaughter Act of 1958
So they must arrive alive at the slaughterhouse. Cannot be drugged. Byproducts (or rendered products) include hooves, bones, beaks, feet, feathers, fat, inedible organs and tissues to become gelatin, soap, candles, lubricants, paints, varnishes, cement, pharmaceuticals, pet food, toothpaste and cosmetics. Animals killed for meat must be processed immediately.
Prior to 1997, livestock were fed these byproducts as protein supplements. 1997, USDA outlawed this practice for cattle to prevent the spread of Mad Cow Disease. Rendering plants also process whole carcasses of farm animals that die of illness and other dead animals, such as euthanized pets. Byproducts (or “rendered”)
Routine Farming Practices Standard? Or cruel? No anesthetic
Culling is rejection of inferior or undesirable animals. Example: male chicks of laying breeds will never lay eggs and are not acceptable meat chickens. So, millions are routinely killed each year when they are one day old. Culling
Centuries-old practice. Rationale: control of population, reduces aggressive behavior, better tasting meat Castration
What do you think the rationale for this is? p.57 Dehorning
Reality is massive industrial type facilities owned by corporations
USDA definition of “farm” Page 58 2007census: 2.2 million farms in U.S.
2007 Census of Agriculture Check out Table 4.4 in our text.
Of the 2.2 million farms reported by USDA statistics in 2007, 1.9 million were owned and operated by individuals and families. But many of these farms operate under contract to corporate farming operations.
More than 60% of farms in the U.S. have 1-40 cattle and calves. Less than 2% of the farms in the U.S. have over 1000 cattle and calves. But when it comes to the total amount of cows and calves in the country, the small farms only have about 10%, while the factory farms have about 30%. Figure 4.7 Explained
How Factory Farms Work Animal Feeding Operation (AFO) Concentrated Animal Feeding Operation (CAFO) Facilities where animals, feed, manure & urine, dead animals and production operations are all on a small land area Facilities where animals, feed, manure & urine, dead animals and production operations are all on a small land area More animals than AFOs
Both AFOs and CAFOs are highly concentrated No grazing areas so that the animals can be fed, housed, medicated and processed with ‘efficiency’.
Females are artificially inseminated. Pregnancies are spaced close together. Mothers and offspring are separated quickly to keep the process moving. Antibiotics, hormones, and growth enhancing drugs are used to ensure rapid growth and prevent deadly diseases. The goal: meat quantity.
Pros and Cons: Factory Farming ECONOMIC, LABOR COSTS DOWN, PRODUCTION UP ANIMALS… Lots of meat at cheap prices Food dispensed with machines Eggs collected by conveyor belts Chickens (who are intelligent sensitive animals) don’t see humans until slaughter Animal Abuses Old days – animals were more cared for – a bond with the farmers – if an animal was sick it was noticed and cared for
Beef cattle shipped by rail to places like Chicago and Kansas City for slaughter. Add refrigeration and electricity and slaughterhouses were able to move to rural areas. Early 20th Century
1950s Large meat companies set up feedlots for cattle and corn became the primary feed for beef cattle. Before this, cattle mostly ate grass. Corn-fed beef has a richer more fatty taste and cattle raised on these diets get fatter more quickly. Add that to the fact that it’s cheaper and demand for corn-fed beef rose. How did this happen?
The Humane Methods of Slaughter Act, which requires that animals be rendered insensible to pain prior to slaughter, is the only major law affecting the handling of farm animals. A few states have humane slaughter provisions but enforcement is lacking. Federal Humane Methods of Slaughter Act
2007 USDA Report 20.7 gallons of milk 27.4 pounds of cheese 25.2 pounds of ice cream Combination of factory farming, high tech breeding and antibiotics and medicines has resulted in higher production of milk per cow over time 1998-2007: Milk production per cow up 18% Figure 4.8 Some stats
Most dairy cows live in small indoor stalls or are confined to large dirt pens called dry lots.
The fact is, to produce milk, cows must have calves.
Therefore, dairy cows are kept pregnant almost constantly, through artificial insemination.
Calves are taken away as soon as possible after birth so they don’t drink the milk.
Any male calf or cow that ceases to produce milk is slaughtered for beef.
Health problems include mastitis, lameness due to back and leg problems.
One of the most controversial drugs given to dairy cattle: bovine growth hormone (BGH) which can increase milk production by 25% - used in dairy herds since 1993 BGH enlarges cows’ udders so much that cows suffer from spine and back problems not to mention dragging their udders in dirt and manure. BGH is banned in Europe and Canada.
Dairy cattle spend long periods of time on concrete surfaces, metal gratings, ands dry lots. Many are killed because they are lame while being raised, or sent to slaughter when adults, as “downers”, sold for as little as $1.
Veal is meat from young calves raised to produce light, delicate flesh. Veal farmers buy unwanted calves from the dairy industry and raise them for veal.
Separated early from their mothers – extremely confined – no exercise or muscle Fed diets low in iron so they are kept light in color – become anemic – can’t stand up and have health problems. This (low iron diets and extreme confinement) is banned in Britain.
2006 – AZ bans use of confining crates for veal calves 2008 – CA voters pass Prop 2 Outlaws caging of farm animals so that they cannot stand, turn around, lie down, or fully stretch their limbs. Effective 2015 Arizona, California
Veal consumption See p. 63 figure 4.9 USDA weighs in
Cattle are directed single file through a chute that leads to the stunner, which shoots a stun bolt into the animal’s forehead and supposedly renders the animal unconscious. Preferred method of slaughter is stun gun.
The animal is then hoisted up with one leg and its throat is cut. The animal is hoisted so that no animal falls into the blood of other slaughtered animals. Then the animal moves down the assembly line to other processing stations where its tail, hocks & hide are removed and the belly is cut open. Slaughterhouse
5 main performance categories: Stunning proficiency Insensibility on the bleed rail Electric prod usage Slipping and falling cattle Vocalizing cattle Grandin on an audit procedure on how well slaughterhouses meet AMI (American Meat Institute) guidelines:
“Survey of Stunning and Handling in Federally Inspected Beef, Veal, Pork, and Sheep Slaughter Plants” Only 3 out of 10 were able to stun at least 95% of the cattle with one shot. Problems with maintenance, supervision, too much use of electric prods, transport of downed animals with forklifts So let’s take a 1996 audit:
28 of the 44 plants stunned 99% - 100% of the cattle on the first captive bolt shot. That means 16 out of 44 did not. And this was during a planned, prepared-for audit where procedures were undoubtedly cleaned up. 8 of the 44 plants failed the audit - p. 64 . Grandin says plants must have zero tolerance. 2007 --- 44 beef plants audited
2001 USDA records and worker interviews of workers (making $9 an hour) claimed to see many conscious cattle moving down the bleed rail. They Die Piece by Piece
USDA relaxed oversight since 1998 Between 1996-1997 alone, 527 recorded violations in which live animals were skinned, cut or scalded p. 64
That’s about 7 animals a minute or one every 10 seconds. A line is supposed to stop when a conscious animal is detected but according to reports this does not happen, and if it did, production would be slower. Most plants process around400 animals per hour.
Downed Animals Mostly dairy cattle Illness, injury or other causes Tossed alive onto trash heaps or dragged around stockyards
Animal groups have tried to get the Downed Animal Protection Act passed by Congress which would require critically ill or injured farm animals be humanely euthanized. Then in 2003 a downed cow in Washington State tested positive for mad cow disease. The USDA quickly announced a ban on the processing of downed cattle for human consumption unless the animal was deemed fit for slaughter by a veterinarian. Since early 1990s
Jewish = “kosher” Muslim = “halal” Teachings require animals killed for food be moving and healthy
Religious slaughter Exempt under Federal Humane Slaughter Act As long as animal suffers loss of consciousness by anemia of the brain caused by the instantaneous severance of the carotid arteries …But therefore cattle are not stunned before being bled out.
. Animals that struggle against restraints stay conscious the longest.
The idea is to induce “near immediate collapse” with throat cutting that is done precisely with a razor sharp knife. Jewish law requires removal of the lymph nodes and sciatic nerve which is difficult to do on the hindquarters so these portions of the animal are often sold in commercial markets. See page 66, textbook. There are upright devices recommended but not required by the law.
Most common – 2007 - 9 billion broilers Highly social – pecking order – usually one male and a dozen or so females Average lifespan 6-10 years Like to forage, peck, flap wings, take dust baths Hens prefer to lay eggs in a private nest. If the hen has mated with a rooster, the eggs become chicks. Chickens
Pecked to death, eaten, injured Factory farming’s solution - debeaking Conditions like this lead to aggression.
The National Chicken Council (NCC), based in Washington, D.C., is the national, non-profit trade association representing the U.S. chicken industry. NCC is a full-service trade association that promotes and protects the interests of the chicken industry and is the industry’s voice before Congress and federal agencies. NCC member companies include chicken producer/processors, poultry distributors, and allied industry firms. The producer/processors account for approximately 95 percent of the chickens produced in the United States. p. 67 National Chicken Council
Day old chicks are moved into chicken hatcheries where food and water are dispensed by machine. Antibiotics are given to prevent spread of diseases and drugs are administered to speed up growth. Broiler chicks
Egg production is way up but consumption PER CAPITA is down – meaning there is increased demand from food manufacturers and restaurants but individually Americans are eating less. See graphs in text on page 68. Laying hens
Only females are kept. Males are killed, either by suffocation or grinders, because of their breeding (by humans) which makes them not meaty enough for human consumption. Laying-hen chicks are sorted when they are one day old.
Beginning 2015 Will outlaw caging of farm animals so that they cannot stand, turn around, lie down or full extend their limbs So how do you think this will play out? Estimated to increase production costs by 20% Egg prices in CA probably will not go up because out of state egg producers will start marketing their eggs in CA. Eliminate CA’s egg industry in a few years…? Proposition 2 California 2008
Humane Methods of Slaughter Act does NOT apply to poultry so chickens do not have to be made unconscious before their throats are slit. Chicken Slaughter
Gathered by feet and carried upside down to crates Shackled upside down to a conveyor belt If they are made unconscious prior to their throats being slit (some slaughterhouses have this) their heads are dunked in water while an electric current passes through the shackles to make the chicken unconscious. The Reality
Birds then pass by an automated cutting blade which slits their throat. Blood drains and after about 90 seconds they are dipped in scalding water to loosen their feathers before being forwarded to the cutting stations. Just part of a regular night’s work The Reality
Grandin noted from a 2006 audit of 19 poultry plants that 5 of these plants passed the audit even though there were serious abuses. Grandin maintains that “when plants are required to uphold a higher standard, they are capable of doing it. Unfortunately there are some people in the producer community who want to make standards so low that even the worst places can pass.” National Chicken Council Standards = Lax
Raised the same way broiler chickens are raised. Unnatural crowding leads to pecking and cannibalism. Slaughtered at 3-6 months. Production steadily increasing (Figure 4.14 p. 70). Modern turkeys are bred to gain weight fast.
Ducks and Geese Ducks Geese Raised indoors Big states: Wisconsin & Indiana Federal law (FDA) prohibits use of hormones Slaughtered by electrocution baths & throat slitting Raised inside for first 6 weeks then outside Big states: California and S. Dakota Federal law prohibits use of hormones Slaughtered by electrocution baths & throat slitting
This causes the birds’ livers to become fatty and swollen 6-10 times their normal size. Foiegras comes from force feeding male ducks and geese a rich mixture of corn, fat, salt and water.
An electric pump forces the mixture down the bird’s throat through a12”-16” tube, several times a day. They are kept in cramped cages to keep them from losing weight. About 2-4 weeks prior to slaughter the process starts.
Animal advocacy groups maintain the birds suffer pain from unusually swollen abdomens and throat lesions. Autopsies have revealed severe liver, heart and esophagus disorders.
Considered a delicacy About $50 a pound Mostly comes from France Production has been banned in Denmark, Finland, Germany, Israel, Norway, Poland, Sweden, Switzerland and the U.K. California passed a law in 2004 to ban the production and sale in CA, effective 2012. Foie Gras
Two plants in the U.S. Sonoma Foie Gras of Sonoma, CA Hudson Valley Foie Gras of Ferndale, NY
Some facts: A pig is a young swine that is not sexually mature. A young female hog is called a gilt and an adult female hog is called a sow. Hogs is a generic term. Hogs are curious, intelligent and supposedly smarter than dogs. Pregnant sows like to build nests of grass and under natural conditions give birth to piglets (a litter averages 8) twice a year. Normal life expectancy is 12-15 years. Gene Baur
Figure 4.15 p. 71 2007 – 61% of all hog farms - less than 100 3.9% of all hog farms raised 5,000+ 3.9% of all hog farms have 56% of the hogs.
Up to 12,000 – concrete or slatted floors – short tethers or in cages to keep the animals fatty (and not toughen the meat) – aggression due to crowding – tail docking and teeth clipping are standard without anesthetic– antibiotics, hormones Hog-Raising Practices
Breeding sows are kept in stalls or tethered until ready to give birth. Gestation crates are about 7’ – 2’ . She eats, urinates and defecates where she stands. In 2006 – USDA reported almost 70% of sows on U.S. farms give birth this way. Spent breeding sows are slaughtered at 2-3 years of age. The piglets are slaughtered at 4-6 months of age when they reach about 250 lbs. Gestation Crates
Gestation Crates – Pro Con Industry Officials Animal Advocates Crates are necessary to keep aggressive sows from fighting and therefore miscarrying fetuses. Protects sows from environmental extremes & hazards Get beneficial attention What would you say are some of the cons?
BANNED in U.K. and Sweden European Union phase-out 2013 Florida – 2002 – outlawed Arizona – 2006 – outlawed Oregon – 2007 - outlawed Colorado – 2008 – voluntary phase-out California – 2009 voted to phase-out by 2015 Gestation Crates
Electrocuted or stunned – cardiac arrest or unconscious Hoisted up by their back feet and bled out Should be bled out within 30 seconds of stunning to avoid consciousness Lowered into vats of scalding water to remove hair before being processed Audits scores were good in 2008 but you have to remember these are not surprise audits And as we saw in PK, it is absolutely terrifying for these animals. Hog Slaughter
Horsemeat/Slaughter Also covered by Humane Slaughter Act – supposed to be unconscious before being hoisted onto the bleed rail and cut open
Vegans oppose farming of animals for human consumption and use. Vegetarians do not eat meat, but some consume secondary products like milk and eggs. Small but increasing minority – 2.3% in 2006 ADULTS Many do it for the reasons we have seen in this presentation, others for health reasons, or environmental, or religious. Labels, labels
Cage Free No legally enforceable meaning because they are not clearly defined. Cage free could still mean in a concrete pen without access to the outdoors; the animals are just not in battery cages.
Growing demand in the U.S. for meat and other animal products that are raised or slaughtered more humanely.Thanks to PETA and others…
Free-range or free-roaming Required by USDA to give their chickens some access to the outside but there is NO VERIFICATION PROCESS to prove claim
Free range Pasture fed Free roaming Means the animals must have been allowed to eat grass and live outdoors during at least part of their lives. Rare inspections. USDA relies on claims on livestock producers. USDA DEFINITIONS
ORGANIC What’s the buzz word you hear everywhere?
But it’s kind of like an honor system: farmers must provide documentation to the U.S.D.A. that they are following standards. Farmers are not allowed to use this label unless they meet requirements of the U.S. National Organic Program.
U.S. Government’s National Organic Program No growth hormones or genetic engineering The animals are not fed animal byproducts. Some restrictions on manure management, slaughter procedures, antibiotics & pesticides, and access to the outdoors To use the label organic farmers must meet their standards. Not optional. But the standards aren’t particularly rigorous or enforced. So what are the requirements?
Some animal protection groups developed and implemented their own programs to define and certify welfare-friendly farming operations. To be called “Certified Humane” the producers must meet specific criteria on manure management, slaughter procedures, diet and lack of growth hormones, antibiotics & pesticides, and access to the outdoors through inspections and verifications. Additional (Optional) Certifications (with inspections and verifications): American Humane Association’s American Humane Certified Humane Farm Animal Care program is funded by HSUS, ASPCA and some others. Certified Humane
Antibiotics administered to farm animals are consumed by those who eat those animals. This nontherapeutic use could lead to antibiotic resistant diseases. Also animal to human disease transmission (known as zoonoses) can result including anthrax, brucellosis, leptospirosis, tuberculosis, streptococcus, orf, avian influenza, ringworm and mad cow. Human Health Issues
WHAT YOU CAN DO Farm Sanctuary Catskill Animal Sanctuary