Misconceptions About Agriculture: Monitoring of Animal Welfare In Meat Plants is Inadequate

There are two different kinds of consumers of agriculture/ livestock in our society,. There is the kind that could care less about where their food comes from or how it gets to their table, and then there is the type who wants to have knowledge about every step of its production. More often then not, the later of these two is concerned with specifically how the animals that their food is produced from are treated. Although in the past these animals used to be slaughtered and treated inhumanely, now it is a common misconception that these animals are treated this way. Some consumers like to think that this is still this case that these animals are still treated inhumanely, but that is simply not the case.

In order to debunk this common misconception about agriculture, particularly livestock, we look at a small piece of history that had a huge impact on the meat packing industry. What am I talking about you ask? I’m talking about the “The Humane Slaughter Act of 1958”. “The Humane Slaughter Act, or the Humane Methods of Livestock Slaughter Act, is a United States federal law designed to decrease suffering of livestock during slaughter. It was approved on August 27, 1958.” (www.wikipedia.org, 2013) So this is an act that is been in place for quite some time, but then the question arises, how is this act enforced in meat packing plants today? As well as the first, this question also has a definitive answer that refutes our misconceptions. In order to answer this question I reference meatmythcrushers.com. “No other sector of animal agriculture has the level of oversight that the U.S. meat packing industry has. Under the Humane Slaughter Act, all livestock must be treated humanely. They must be given water at all times, given feed if they are held at a plant for an extended period and they must be handled in a way that minimizes stress. Federal veterinarians monitor animal handling continually and may take a variety of actions — including shutting a plant down — for violations.” (www.meatmythcrushers.com, 2014)

With these two points of evidence stated it’s easy to understand how people could be uneducated about this topic and create misconceptions. I’m guilty myself because I too thought that animals in meat packing plants were still being mistreated today, thankfully I am wrong. So there you have it, another misconception about agriculture debunked.

Sources: http://www.meatmythcrushers.com/myths/myth-monitoring-of-animal-welfare-is-inadequate.html#footnote1

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Humane_Slaughter_Act

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