The Fellowship of Life
Sir: I must take issue with Terence Morris's statement, in his report on the Christian Consultative Council for the Welfare of Animals' conference “Men and Animals” (The Tablet, 8 February), that millions benefit from factory farming.
Factory farmed animals are notoriously prone to disease, due to their overcrowded conditions. Hence the common practice of administering low-dose antibiotics in foodstuffs as a preventative measure. It is well known that the medical profession is seriously concerned at the increase in human immunity to various antibiotics resulting from consumption of these animals.
Factory farms also produce incredible amounts of unsavoury affluent. For example, an 80-sow unit with up to 1000 fattening pigs will produce 2,240 gallons of slurry a day. 60 acres of land are necessary to absorb this volume of slurry, which will be spread on the surface causing an obnoxious smell to nearby residents.
Finally, the farmers and stockmen who work with animals which are kept in barren cages or concrete stalls may become desensitised to the deprivation and suffering which is before their eyes.
Is it up to each individual to examine their own conscience with regard to lifestyle, diet and dependence on products of misery. Alternatives are possible.
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