Why meat alternatives: Concerns about animal welfare

Why meat alternatives – The compassionate reasons

 Bambi and FlowerHayley playing with Flower at Freedom Hill Sanctuary in Adelaide, South Australia.

If you’ve been watching our show you’ll know that Hayley is our raw vegan alternative chef. Hayley’s a passionate advocate for animal welfare and as such she chooses to follow a vegan lifestyle which means she avoids all animal products  in both her diet (eg. dairy, eggs, all animal meats and other animal products like gelatine) and her lifestyle (eg. no leather or fur clothes).

With all the “paleo” publicity out there at the moment, you may be wondering  why on earth people would choose to not eat meat  or choose to reduce the meat in their diet. We’ve discussed the health-based reasons previously and so this post is all about the second main reason that people are looking for meat (and egg and dairy) alternatives and that is concern for animal welfare.

These include but aren’t limited to:

  • Concerns about factory farming.
  • Concerns about the treatment of animals before slaughter.
  • Concerns about the method of slaughter of animals.

These relate to:

  • Dairy products
  • Eggs and egg-based products
  • All meats (includes fish, chicken, beef, lamb, veal, pork, etc.)
  • Other animal based products like gelatine

There are a number of detailed and interesting resources on these issues, so rather than re-invent the wheel we thought we’d direct you to some of these resources and they’re listed below.

Online quick guides:

Make it Possible has great summary resources on the label definitions on animal products – eg. The difference between free range and organic, the amount of space the chickens are given, what happens to the male chicks etc.

General definition on factory farming in Australia

http://www.makeitpossible.com/facts/what-is-factory-farming.php

Summary tables regarding chicken meat, egg, pig meat and turkey meat labels

http://www.makeitpossible.com/guides/chicken-meat-labels.php

http://www.makeitpossible.com/guides/egg-labels.php

http://www.makeitpossible.com/guides/pig-meat-labels.php

http://www.makeitpossible.com/guides/turkey-meat-labels.php

Documentaries –

Food Inc. http://www.takepart.com/foodinc

Earthlings. http://earthlings.com/

Jean and Patrick

Hayley, hanging out with Jean and Patrick at Freedom Hill Animal Sanctuary

If you’ve just recently decided to adopt a vegan or vegetarian diet, and you’re looking for some ideas about what you could use instead of meat, dairy or egg, enter watch our Lasagne Episode for some more ideas.

Alternatively, for some more ideas, you could sign up for our free Cooking with Alternatives ecourse.