FACTORY FARMING

This is how pigs used to be raised

Here a sow can take care of her piglets the natural way, outdoors, in the fresh air, and get some exercise, too!

The more we learn about factory farming the more likely we are to change the way we eat. And the disturbing health concerns and horrific farm animal cruelty are turning some of us away from consuming meat and dairy products altogether.

Obviously, we all need food, but we also have choices when it comes to deciding what to eat, where it originates and how it is produced.

Let’s take a look at the stark facts that are influencing humans to embrace cruelty free alternatives.

CHICKEN FOR EGGS

Thousands of egg-laying hens crammed together suffer from disease and injury

Chicken factory farming looks like this!
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  • An estimated 250 million egg-laying hens in the USA that supply 95% of  the demand spend their life in battery cages with slanted wire floors, 5-8 birds crammed into a 14 square inch space.
  • On chicken farms hens suffer from feather loss, abrasions and aggression towards each other.


  • To minimize hostile behavior, their beaks, filled with nerves, are seared off with a hot blade causing severe and chronic pain.
  • To encourage egg productions, they are subjected to constant light and sometimes starved to shock their bodies into another cycle.
  • After a two-year exploitation period, the hen may either die from fatigue or be slaughtered.
  • Male chicks are of little value. Around 260 million newborns are killed yearly... suffocated in trash bags, gassed or ground up alive in a “macerator.”

CHICKEN FOR MEAT

  • Almost all broiler chickens have been genetically altered to produce bigger thighs and breasts. The birds become so heavy they can hardly stand.
  • Since a caged environment of factory farming would cause undesirable flesh bruising, they are kept in warehouse-like buildings in such cramped conditions they are forced to walk over each other.
  • Often the litter is not changed frequently enough and high levels of ammonia cause many health problems.
  • If the birds do not succumb to heart failure before then, they will generally have reached their optimum weight at just 6-7 weeks of age. A chick in an adult’s body!

TURKEY FOR ROASTING

Many factory-farmed turkeys do not survive the journey to the slaughterhouse

The horrors of turkey factory farming


  • Many of the above factors involving chickens also apply to turkey farming practices, affecting some 280 million turkeys yearly.
  • Through selective breeding a male turkey can weigh 3 times as much as its wild counterpart in only 4 month and leads to painful health problems.


  • They are also debeaked and have a portion of their toes amputated without anesthetic or pain relief.
  • Because of frequent rough handling when they are crated for transportation, serious injury occurs. And if the slaughterhouse is a long distance, many die during the journey from stress as well as food and water deprivation.

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It is our obligation to tell visitors to this site that although the Humane Methods of Slaughter Act requires animals to be rendered insensible (unconscious) before shackling and slaughter, the United States Department of Agriculture does not interpret this law to include birds killed for food.

Shouldn’t we be asking why not, demand humane treatment and ensure these better practices be maintained at all times?

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PIGS AND PIGLETS

When pigs are confined to a cage where they can hardly move, they literally go mad

Who wouldn't go mad having to live like this!


  • Pigs are affectionate and intelligent animals so when they are confined in cages too narrow for them to turn around, they literally go mad and can even become cannibalistic.


  • At factory farms dedicated to raising pigs, a breeding sow is typically first impregnated at 7 months and, until slaughter, lives a continuous cycle of pregnancy, birth and nursing.
  • When piglets are born, the sow is kept in a “farrowing crate” separate from her offspring so they are not crushed by her weight. She can stand, lie down and nurse them but she is unable to turn around and see them. In fact, she may never, ever see them!

COWS FOR MILK

Controlled feeding for these cows never allowed to graze and socialize

The life of a factory farm cow is short and miserable


  • After giving birth, a dairy cow usually produces milk for about 10 months so it is impregnated regularly to maintain the milk production.
  • When injected with Bovine Growth Hormone, cows can produce double the quantity of milk they would otherwise.


  • At a factory farming location they are kept in a holding facility, unable to socialize, and are only allowed out for twice daily milking.
  • In a natural setting a cow can live up to 20 years but these are usually slaughtered after just 5 years of intense industrialized farming.

BEEF AND VEAL

  • Further examples of cruelty associated with raising cows involve painful tail docking, castration and dehorning of male calves bred for veal and beef.
  • Within hours of being born they are taken away from their mothers and become so distressed they cry intensely and become sick.
  • For their meat to be pale and tender, veal calves spend their entire 4 months of existence with no exercise and a diet that is iron deficient.
  • After grazing for the first 6-12 months of their life, calves raised for beef are fattened for six months on an unnatural diet before being slaughtered.

HUMANE FARMING VS FACTORY FARMING

  • We are heartened by the actions of Kevin Fulton, a Nebraska landowner who practices humane and holistic agricultural and animal farming and is working to change “industry” practices.
  • Currently there are approximately 51,000 supporters in Nebraska of humane farming.
  • Fulton believes that if animals are going to be raised for food, they need to be given decent lives and that it is wrong to make an animal suffer unnecessarily, in a factory farming environment. He doesn’t brand cattle, notch their ears, dock their tails or cut off their horns. To quote, “We all die, but at least my animals, they have only one bad day.”

MORE TOPICS

In the coming months we will be adding pages to showcase more topics related to how we treat animals. For now we invite you to read some basic facts we have also compiled regarding Puppy Mill Dogs. Please click on those words to view.


OUR GIFT CATALOG

One way for us to join forces and support the No Kill Advocacy Center is to acquire a unique, handcrafted glass pendant from our collection of Gift Ideas For Her. Please click on the words Gift Catalog to view. We are proud to make them available to our visitors. Enjoy looking at them, giving them and wearing them!

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Return to Saving Homeless Pets - Just One Day

Return to No Kill Animal Shelters - No Kill Conference

Return to Home page from Factory Farming



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We found an interesting web site that complements the message we are putting out on this page. Beyond Factory Farming is a Canadian organization that promotes livestock production that is safe, fair and environmentally friendly. Instead of feeding cattle on grain, farmers are now returning to the grass-fed system. Herds graze intensively on small paddocks for short periods of time so that the land can then recover and regenerate.

Pigs and poultry are also being raised more humanely on pasture instead of in confinement as more and more consumers support holistic farming practices. Please visit http://beyondfactoryfarming.org/build-alternatives/socially-responsible-production/holistic-management to find out more.