1. Ethics and animal welfare
Freedom is a basic right for
humans and animals. If severely restricting
the freedom of animals to behave naturally
diminishes this basic right, then the welfare
of the animal will be damaged.
2. Public Health
Because of excessive use of antibiotics
in the fodder used in industrial farming,
we risk the creation of resistant strains
of bacteria in factory farm animals. When
meat from these animals is consumed by humans
the information about antibiotic resistance
is passed on to similar bacteria in the
human body which then also become resistant
to the same antibiotics that were used in
the animal fodder. This poses problems when
treating human bacteriological illnesses
such as pneumonia.
Other dangers are salmonella and BSE. See also: The
European Commission on BSE
3. World food production
Agricultural areas in the Third World are
being used to produce fodder for animals
in our industrial farming system instead
of producing food for local populations.
This distorts the local economy.
4. Enjoying your neighborhood
The stench and noise of industrial farming (sometimes
waste basins) makes living in the vicinity unpleasant and blights the properties in the area.
5. Landscape and bio-diversity
Large industrial farmers crowd out small
farmers. Because of the creation of monocultures
(grass and maize for fodder), the release
(depositing) of heavy metals contained within
the fertilizers into the soil and nutrient
overkill generally, wildlife and landscape
The following passage expands in detail on the
shortcomings of industrial farming and industrial
animal health and welfare arguments against
the use of industrial animal husbandry systems
presented to the world bank by the organization Compassion In World Farming.
See also: Facts
and Data on Factory Farm
is wrong in factory farming?
One of the most important objections to
industrial farming is of an ethical nature.
Even if all the environmental problems could
be solved, and even if all the energy and
mineral accounts of the farmers were balanced,
then still the manner in which the industrial
farming industry treats animals is unacceptable.
Because the meat has to arrive on the shelves
of the supermarkets as cheap as possible,
the animals are allowed just enough room
to stand and stay alive. Male pigs are castrated
without anesthetics as soon as possible
after birth. If someone does that to his
or her cat, he will get a substantial fine
for animal abuse. But animals that are bred
for slaughter fall under a different set
of regulations. Chickens to be fattened
before they are slaughtered live in 23-hour
daylight conditions. That makes a chicken
believe that he has to keep eating. The
light only goes out for one hour each day,
in which the chicken is allowed to rest.
With pigs the light is off as much as possible.
Two times a day for a half an hour the light
is turned on (so the farmer can check on
his animals) and the rest of the time it
as many animals as possible in a small space,
without freedom of movement or the ability
to express natural behavior can not be done
other than in an animal unfriendly way.
Not withstanding the changes to the law
and regulation in the area of animal welfare
and, even when taking into account the intrinsic
value of the animal, it is not possible
to guarantee the basic
right to freedom for animals while industrial
farming methods continue to be used.
have no right in a legal sense, but they are
legal objects: comparable to cars that can
change owners and can be rented out. Contrary
to humans, animals are not legal subjects:
in our system of law, it cannot be a carrier
of rights and obligations. When the animal
in the industrial farming industry is denied
the right to express natural or even chosen
behavior, then this means animal
abuse, despite the good care it receives.
What is wrong
in the fishing industry?
On the face of it, there would seem to
be no objection to the consumption of fish.
Unless one is ethically against the killing
of living creatures. Nevertheless, the
objections mentioned above concerning the
consumption of meat are also valid where the
consumption of fish is concerned.
Without starting a discussion on whether fish
have a sense of pain or not, it can be said
that the current fishing industry uses animal
unfriendly catching techniques. For those
that are not impressed with the short suffering
of fish during the act of being caught, we
point to the side catch
of mammals such as dolphins in nets meant
for tuna. Dolphins are trapped and ensnared
in the kilometer-long nets and can do nothing
more than wait for death by drowning.
is that when trawl nets are used, not only
the targeted species of the correct size
are caught but also 70% of the catch is
thrown back overboard. This is because either
the fish are too small, the landing of which
is prohibited by law, or because the permitted
quota had already been reached, or because
the species of fish caught happens to be
commercially uninteresting. The 70% of the
catch that is dumped back into the sea is
by then crushed to death, suffocated or
Also for the environment this method of
fishing is detrimental, if not to say disastrous.
The trawl nets ruin the bottom of the sea,
which cause the total disruption and destruction
of the ecological system for a long time.
The seas and oceans are fished empty and
Fish are not only caught, but also farmed.
Some salmon, for example, are kept in enormous
floating tanks, comparable to industrial
farming units. Finally, there are some health
objections attached to the consumption of
fish. In the seventies, the high level of
mercury (quicksilver) present in fish was
a hot item.
Because of oil pollution, and the dumping
of all sorts of waste, including nuclear,
in the ocean, the health of fish is poor,
and the fish contains hazardous materials.