Remember when I defined animal rights and animal welfare? Better know the difference cause I’ll be writing about them for the next couple hundred words. Animal rights will not be so prevalent in this post, but keep in mind how someone who values animal rights would view the journal I am about review.
Here educate yourself and click on this: Animal Welfare
…if that completely failed you can do it the old fashioned way and copy/paste this: http://web.a.ebscohost.com/ehost/pdfviewer/pdfviewer?sid=cdf284fe-c374-4d53-bca1-7b08b67dad2a%40sessionmgr4004&vid=1&hid=4209 (oh my gosh so much work)
I’ll admit it’s an intimidating piece of work and a little bit dry, but there are some excellent examples that illustrate what animal welfare is all about. I strongly advise that if you don’t know what something to Google it and see what comes up.
A quick side note before I dive into my review. Be skeptical. When you look up sites about controversial topics you’re bound to find arguments that are a load of crap. They want to sway your opinion to believe the extreme. Someone could claim to be an animal welfare expert, when really they have no evidence to back themselves up. One time, I kid you not I found an article written by a reverend on the topic of animal production. He had no farm background or degree in the area of agriculture. WHERE IS YOUR CREDIBILITY? Out-the-window, buh-bye!
Down to the nitty gritty. The criteria I used to determine that this journal is beneficial to the agriculture community constitutes the following:
- Relates to a diversified audience
- Current issues are addressed
- Entails ideas for the future
A diversified audience is important to agriculture because it captures more minds for the sake of progress. The first couple of paragraphs mentions household pets, vegetarianism, and aspects of animal welfare. First of all, those three categories cover a wide range of people. Second, the organization of the paragraphs immediately gears the reader towards learning more about animal welfare. The more agriculture can reach out and connect to people the more they will understand the progress of production. When I say ‘progress of production’ I mean become more efficient in producing agriculture products. Food. Once people understand production, they won’t complain how food ends up on their plates because they know how it got there.
Current issues are addressed. The reason why current issues are valuable to the field of agriculture are because they show where areas need improvement. There are several animal welfare issues brought up in the journal including:
- Sow gestation stalls
- Veal crates
- Foie gras production
- Slaughter process
- Tie stall farms
The issues above are excellent examples of where animal welfare is trying to improve. The journal does a great job of briefly assessing the problem and then explaining what science could do to improve the issue.
Side note: I had to do a little digging on foie gras production. I had no idea ducks were “force-fed” to produce huge livers for foie gras. I stumbled upon an article that caught my eye. (Gosh I’m getting good at inserting links. Click on the previous eye, wink wink). The article went into depth of how such huge livers were produced from these ducks and did a tour of the farm. I thought the article was very well written, until I did a little background search on the author. The author was a chef. Of course they think this liver production was perfectly fine! (They just want to keep those fat livers coming). Credibility definitely dropped a bit.
Ideas for the future are important to the field of agriculture, including animal welfare because they will progress production. It is absolutely essential that production of crops and animals are highly efficient. We live in a demanding world my friends. People consume a lot. This journal emphasizes through the use of scientific methods we can become more efficient. Keeping in mind that processes have to be ethical as well. The public is starting to care a lot about where and how food gets to their plates. A sense of direction for issues in the agriculture is a step towards innovating the next big thing. More ideas = better research = more efficient production.