Why Farm-Raised Is Better Than Factory-Farmed
Why farm-raised is better than factory-farmed
A farm-raised animal product where the animal was free-range is a healthier option over a factory-farmed animal. Sustainable agriculture (traditional, small organic farm) is a much better method than industrial agriculture (large, commercial, factory farm). Here are some reasons why:
Free-range animals humanely treated
- Farm-raised animals are humanely treated and are permitted to carry out natural behaviors such as eating grass, rooting in the dirt and pecking the ground. These natural behaviors enhance the quality of their meat, dairy and eggs.
- Many commercially farmed animals are raised in small spaces, restricted exercise and suffer long bouts of transportation. Tightly packed into cages, sheds, or pens, animals such as cows, chickens, turkeys and pigs cannot practice their normal behaviours, such as rooting, grazing, and roosting. Lack of exercise, sunlight and grass can lead to disease. This decreases the meat quality and increases the risk for illness – for both the animals and humans. Techniques have been developed to ensure animal and human safety, for example, water troughs can be monitor from a Rugged Industrial Keyboards In An Integrated Computing System or a tablet to check an animals welfare wherever you may be. There have been many cooling solutions developed for both the animals and machinery involved to stay healthy. However, consumers need to be aware that farmers need to make sure that their business is successful whilst maintaining there animals health.
Less use of antibiotics and hormones
- Farm-raised animals are produced without the use of pesticides, hormones, antibiotics, and other hazardous inputs. This creates products that are nutrient-dense and healthier.
- Factory-farms often give their animals antibiotics. Overuse of antibiotics can lead to antibiotic resistance among humans consuming the factory-farmed meat. When antibiotics are made less effective, the health of certain populations (elderly, medically vulnerable and children) is compromised.
- Factory-farms also administer hormones to their animals. Consumption of hormone-treated animal products may cause hormonal issues among humans (i.e. early puberty among females) and increase the risk of cancers.
Less environmental consequences
- Sustainable farms apply animal manure at a rate that the land/pasture can handle in order to protect riparian areas. This causes less damage to the environment and creates a useful, organic fertilizer for the land.
- There are many environmental consequences to factory farming. When animals are raised in feedlots or cages, they deposit large amounts of manure in a small amount of space. This has environmental consequences to the soil, air and water table. Due to high transportation costs, the manure is often dumped close to the feedlot. This practice can contaminate ground water with pathogens, phosphorous, and nitrogen – a serious waste management issue. Manure storage also emits dangerous gases such as ammonia, hydrogen sulfide, and methane into the air. It is also hazardous to the workers on the farm.
More nutrients such as vitamins, minerals and antioxidants
- Grass-fed, farm-raised meat has significantly higher levels of omega-3s, antioxidants, minerals, and other important nutrients. Eggs from pastured hens can contain as much as 20 times more omega-3s than eggs from factory hens. The meat and milk from grass-fed ruminants are the richest known sources of a good fat called “conjugated linoleic acid” or CLA. When ruminants are raised on fresh pasture alone, their milk and meat contain as much as five times more CLA than products from animals fed conventional diets.
To learn more about why farm-raised is better than factory-raised, check out my article, “Why Grass-Fed Beef Is Better Than Grain-Fed Beef.” In it, I outline more pros and cons of farm-raised/grass-fed vs. factory-raised/grain-fed animal products. Check it out!
- What are your thoughts on sustainable farming vs. industrial farming?
- Do you have anything to share about farm-raised or factory-raised animals?
- Did I miss anything?
When she is not slaying fat and building muscle, Jennifer can be found trekking barefoot, traveling, cooking and refining her photography skills. She also enjoys reading and writing about food culture, history and the science of human movement.