If you’ve got livestock, then you’ve got dead stock
Being at the farm and being around the farm animals meant being around death. It was hard not to think about. Especially at meal time. Every meal consisted of meat born, raised, and butchered on the farm. [Well to be honest most butchering happened elsewhere.]
Meat is without a doubt death. But does that mean it is evil, wrong, or bad? I really don’t know.
I was eating vegetarian mostly. If I wasn’t so lazy I would probably be 100% vegetarian. Meat is just easier.
Part of me wants to leave a little meat in my diet. While traveling I maybe somewhere where meat dishes are the only option. If someone cooks me food I don’t want to have to say, “No, I don’t eat meat.”
If we are going to continue to eat meat, I would much prefer my meat come from farms like Managarara. No feedlots. And, at this farm, the meat is more sustainable. I imagine they have less carbon footprint because the grazing style does sequester carbon.
There is this disconnect between people, their meat, and the animal it comes from. If I was supreme ruler of the world my rule would be that if you want to eat meat from a certain type of animal you have to kill it, process it, and use the entire thing at least once a year. Then you get permission to eat meat. If I really wanted people to eat less meat I could do once ever six months.
People don’t want to know that the meat they are eating comes from an abused animal. They want to live in denial. They outsource the suffering to someone else. That is wrong in my mind. More wrong than eating meat.
Hunters, who hunt for food specifically, stand on a higher ethical ground. You can’t say killing an animal is bad if you eat meat.
On the other side, it feels weird knowing that every animal on the farm is only living so that one day a human can take their life. They have been brought into life specifically to have it cut short. Even the dairy cows.
They are milked to feed animals that become meat. If they get old they will be sold off. If people didn’t eat meat. They wouldn’t be required, since, again, they are mainly used to feed other meat animals.
There was a time when I was looking into raising meat rabbits. I had the whole thing planned out. I was getting ready to build and buy stock. But i read most people quit doing meat rabbits because they are so cute and hard to kill all the time. I used to think I could raise farm animals.
But I really don’t know if I want to kill animals all the time. I could live vegetarian. If I want meat, I’ll do it myself and use the entire animal. No waste. [Ideally, that should be the ethic of everyone.]
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There was a sick dairy cow that really got to me.
She attracted some sort of disease. She lost all her weight to diarrhea. She was just skin and bones.
We separated her from the rest. She walked about a mile to get back. I took her back out and closed the gate. She went out the back and walked an even longer route to get back.
Every morning she would come in and try to be milked. She just wanted to live. But, we knew we had to put her down.
I wanted to do it. But, I was afraid to ask. I didn’t want to come off like some sort of sadist.
She was shot in the head.
She was the third sick animal killed while I was at the farm.
A mercy killing?
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I do think people should eat less meat. Animals have more value to the world than just food. The factory farm system isn’t natural. It’s not good for people or the planet.
But, i wouldn’t tell people not to eat meat.
Diversify the cuts you eat. Eat more foreign bits. Don’t let the life go to waste.
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There is a benefit to killing. On the farm there are traps and poison to kill predator species. Animals like rats, stoats, and ferral cats. These animals kill native birds.
The farm family has noticed a return of native birds. They weren’t there when they moved in. But, with the death of some species they’ve returned.
It reminded me of the first place I was WWOOFing in Northland. They had a trap for minor birds and would kill the ones they catch. The bodies would be added to the compost. Recycling.
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We killed and processed a pig for a wedding party at the Eco Lodge.