Why become a FARMetarian? What are the benefits?
Better for Animals
Factory Farming is a cruel and inhumane way to treat animals. This system of raising animals for food production exists to feed a population that demands meat and demands low, low prices for that meat. You can vote with your consumer dollars and say “NO” to these factory farms.
What’s so bad about factory farming?
- Terrible Diet = Unhealthy, Unhappy Animals
Factory farmed animals are fed an unnatural diet of mostly on corn and soy. This changes the pH of an animal’s stomach so that it becomes acidic and which can cause discomfort, sickness and even lead to death. Subsequently, factory farmers try to minimize the damage by giving the animals drugs like ionophores and antibiotics. This cycle could be avoided if the animals were allowed to eat a natural diet. Animals are also given growth hormones so that each animal is more profitable.
- Terrible Treatment of Animals
Factory farmed animals live their lives in extreme confinement. They are raised that way, not out of cruelty but solely to maximize profits. The consequence of this is that the animals’ suffering is not taken into consideration. Chickens, for example, are confined to battery cages and are commonly debeaked. Breeding sows (female pigs) are often confined to gestation crates for their entire lives – not even able to turn around.
- Terrible Slaughter Practices
Does this mean you have to stop eating meat altogether? No! Choose meat products that have been raised on real, honest-to-goodness farms that treat their animals like they are living creatures, not just products for the supermarket.
Better for Your Health
Did you know that pasture raised animal products can actually be better for your health? It’s true! Becoming a FARMetarian is not just better for the animals, it can be better for you too!
- Less Bad Fat
Beef and lamb that is 100% grass-fed is lower in total fat and lower in saturated fat. It also contains higher amounts of Omega 3 and Omega 6 fatty acids, which are essential for health. There have been studies that also suggest pasture-fed chicken is also lower in saturated fat and higher in Omega 3 compared to chickens raised without access to fresh forage. Basically, these products are low in the fats that are bad for you and high in the fats that are good for you!
- More Nutrients
Meat from grass-fed beef is higher in vitamin E, beta-carotene, B vitamins, thiamin, riboflavin, calcium, magnesium, and potassium.
- Reduced Risk of E. Coli
The Journal of Dairy Science has reported that levels of E. coli are usually higher in grain-fed cattle, adding to the likelihood that the meat of a grain-fed animal will be contaminated with E. coli during processing.
Better for the Environment
Raising animals in a more natural way is better for, well, nature!
- Fewer Emissions
It takes half the fossil-fuel energy to produce two pounds of grass-fed beef as it does to produce the same amount of grain-fed beef. A USDA study found that raising cows solely on grass, instead of in factory farms or corn finishing, produced fewer pollutants and other emissions including methane, nitrous oxide, and carbon dioxide.
- Less Erosion & Improved Water Quality
Growing the corn and soy that feed factory farmed meat can cause soil erosion and flooding. Additionally, runoff of phosphorus is reduced.
- Nutrition Journal A review of fatty acid profiles and antioxidant content in grass-fed and grain-fed beef – http://www.nutritionj.com/content/9/1/10
- Influence of Pasture Intake on the Fatty Acid Composition, and Cholesterol, Tocopherols, and Tocotrienols Content in Meat from Free-Range Broilers – http://ps.fass.org/content/87/1/80.abstract
- SARE Pastured Poultry Products – http://mysare.sare.org/mySARE/ProjectReport.aspx?do=viewRept&pn=FNE99-248&y=1999&t=1
- USDA Putting Dairy Cows Out to Pasture An Environmental Plus – http://www.ars.usda.gov/is/AR/archive/may11/cows0511.pdf