This book is amazing. I highly recommend it.
I feel even more cemented in my meat-free lifestyle after reading it, however it’s fairly unbiased, providing facts from all angles. Although most people won’t change, I do think most readers would at least rethink their eating habits. I want to share it here because, as been pointed out by numerous credible sources, factory farming is the reason for much of our planet’s degradation.
Below I have compiled some of my favorite facts quoted directly from the book via the notes I found here. So thankful I found this website as it saved me TONS of time going back through the book to find them. BUY THE BOOK HERE!
“I’m not better than anyone, and I’m not trying to convince people to live by my standards of what’s right. I’m trying to convince them to live by their own.” ― Jonathan Safran Foer, Eating Animals
AND NOW THE FACTS:
- “We know, at least, that this decision (ending factory farming) will help prevent deforestation, curb global warming, reduce pollution, save oil reserves, lessen the burden on rural America, decrease human rights abuses, improve publish health, and help eliminate the most systematic animal abuse in history.”
- “Just how destructive does a culinary preference have to be before we decide to eat something else? If contributing to the suffering of billions of animals that live miserable lives and (quite often) die in horrific ways isn’t motivating, what would be? If being the number one contributor to the most serious threat facing the planet (global warming) isn’t enough, what is? And if you are tempted to put off these questions of conscience, to say not now, then when?”
- “Perhaps in the back of our minds we already understand, without all the science I’ve discussed, that something terribly wrong is happening. Our sustenance now comes from misery. We know that if someone offers to show us a film on how our meat is produced, it will be a horror film. We perhaps know more than we care to admit, keeping it down in the dark places of our memory– disavowed. When we eat factory-farmed meat we live, literally, on tortured flesh. Increasingly, that tortured flesh is becoming our own.”
- “Elsewhere the paper notes that vegetarians and vegans (including athletes) ‘meet and exceed requirements’ for protein. And, to render the whole we-should-worry-about-getting-enough-protein-and-therefore-eat-meat idea even more useless, other data suggests that excess animal protein intake is linked with osteoporosis, kidney disease, calcium stones in the urinary tract, and some cancers. Despite some persistent confusion, it is clear that vegetarians and vegans tend to have more optimal protein consumption than omnivores. ”
- “Needless to say, jamming deformed, drugged, overstressed birds together in a filthy, waste-coated room is not very healthy. Beyond deformities, eye damage, blindness, bacterial infections of bones, slipped vertebrae, paralysis, internal bleeding, anemia, slipped tendons, twisted lower legs and necks, respiratory diseases, and weakened immune systems are frequent and long-standing problems on factory farms.”
- “Choosing leaf or flesh, factory farm or family farm, does not in itself change the world, but teaching ourselves, our children, our local communities, and our nation to choose conscience over ease can.”
- “You can call your turkey organic and torture it daily. ”
- “If we were to one day encounter a form of life more powerful and intelligent than our own, and it regarded us as we regard fish, what would be our argument against being eaten?”
- “Isn’t it strange how upset people get about a few dozen baseball players taking growth hormones, when we’re doing what we’re doing to our food animals and feeding them to our children?”
- “However much we obfuscate or ignore it, we know that the factory farm is inhumane in the deepest sense of the word. And we know that there is something that matters in a deep way about the lives we create for the living beings most within our power. Our response to the factory farm is ultimately a test of how we respond to the powerless, to the most distant, to the voiceless–it is a test of how we act when no one is forcing us to act one way or another.”
- “What the meat industry figured out is that you don’t need healthy animals to make a profit. Sick animals are more profitable… Factory farms calculate how close to death they can keep animals without killing them. That’s the business model. How quickly they can be made to grow, how tightly they can be packed, how much or how little they can eat, how sick they can get without dying…We live in a world in which it’s conventional to treat an animal like a block of wood.”
- “Scientific studies and government records suggest that virtually all (upwards of 95 percent of) chickens become infected with E. coli (an indicator of fecal contamination) and between 39 and 75 percent of chickens in retail stores are still infected. Around 8 percent of birds become infected with salmonella (down from several years ago, when at least one in four birds was infected, which still occurs on some farms). Seventy to 90 percent are infected with another potentially deadly pathogen, campylobacter. Chlorine baths are commonly used to remove slime, odor, and bacteria. Of course, consumers might notice that their chickens don’t taste quite right – how good could a drug-stuffed, disease-ridden, shit-contaminated animal possibly taste? – but the birds will be injected (or otherwise pumped up) with “broths” and salty solutions to give them what we have come to think of as the chicken look, smell, and taste. (A recent study by Consumer Reports found that chicken and turkey products, many labeled as natural, “ballooned with 10 to 30 percent of their weight as broth, flavoring, or water.”
- “Find a printer paper and imagine a full-grown bird shaped something like a football with legs standing on it. Imagine 33,000 of these rectangles in a grid. (Broilers are never in cages, and never on multiple levels.) Now enclose the grid with windowless walls and put a ceiling on top. Run in automated (drug-laced) feed, water, heating, and ventilation systems. This is a farm.”
- “The UN special envoy on food called it a ‘crime against humanity’ to funnel 100 million tons of grain and corn to ethanol when almost a billion people are starving. So what kind of crime is animal agriculture, which uses 756 million tons of grain and corn per year, much more than enough to adequately feed the 1.4 billion human who are living in dire poverty?”
- “We are breeding creatures incapable of surviving in any place other than the most artificial settings. We have focused the awesome power of modern genetic knowledge to bring into being animals that suffer more.”
- “About 3 million pounds of antibiotics are given to humans each year, but a whopping 17.8 million pounds are fed to livestock.