Billion of animals are raised and slaughtered each year for human consumption. Factory farms are usually so overcrowded that animals have no space to move around. But the animals go through much more than that. Pigs are stunned, their throats are cut and they’re left bleeding to death. Cows are prodded and dragged to slaughter houses or they die as they’ve been deprived of food and water. As for chickens, they often peck each other to death since they have no room to move about. To prevent this, their upper beaks are cut off.
In addition, animals are not only sprayed with pesticides but they are also fed antibiotics and hormones which, in turn, are passed on to the consumer. William Roberts says, “”When we kill animals to eat them, they end up killing us because their flesh, which contains cholesterol and saturated fat, was never intended for human beings, who are natural herbivores.” Studies have shown that people who eat meat are twice as likely to die from heart disease and cancer. Meat consumption has been connected to many diseases such as hypertension, kidney disease and diabetes.
Finally, the animal farming industry is unsustainable. After 1-2 years, cows are usually butchered for their meat. Think of all the food, mostly grains might I add, that a cow would eat over the course of that period. Now imagine someone from a slaughter house came in, killed the cow, cut his body into pieces of meat and put it all into another pile. Which pile do you think would feed more people, the one that used to be his body or the one that went into creating and nourishing it?
There’s enough plant-based food to feed the entire human population and yet there are enough hungry people on the planet to almost completely fill up two whole continents and nearly 3 million children starve to death annually. In fact, half the world’s agricultural land is used for livestock farming. This is not only worse for the environment, but it is also less efficient for feeding people than actually growing food for people to eat. This is what makes factory farming so unsustainable.
Hopefully, you’ll become a vegetarian like I have. Of course, you don’t have to become a vegetarian right away. You could start by reducing the amount of meat you eat each week or slowly eliminate certain meats from your diet, like red meat, then eventually, you’ll eventually stop eating meat completely. In the end, it’s your choice if you want to follow the path that is the most sustainable, healthy, and compassionate.