Research Paper: Animals &amp Their Place Inside

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[. . .] For example, one cannot have such cases as the head of the FDA being a former business man in favor of big companies. This is simply un-American, un-democratic and unfair towards the system which this nation has set up. If companies were to be better regulated, they should not be compromised from the inside. According to the film Food, Inc., few know about these kinds of things, that can go from affecting again, not just animals but also our society, thereby leading from a small snowball to a huge catastrophe.

Though companies must thrive on what they have built for themselves and though they should be appreciated in the spirit of Americanism and competition, it is also sad to note struggling local farmers, whose animals are treated properly, yet who are being driven out of business. According to the history of Factory Farming reference throughout this paper, "by 2001, there were only 92,000 pig farms left," due to the fact that most small pig farms had been driven out of business. In fact, from 1992 to 2002, according to these statistics, the number of pig farms in the U.S. fell by 67%. Sadly, the statistics continue to mount according to this same source:

"Today the large industrial animal factories account for 99.9% of chickens, 97% of chickens for eggs, 99% for turkeys, 95% for pigs and 78% for cattle. In each animal product, typically no more than 3 to 5 companies control the entire output." (Evolution of Factory Farming)

This is not just a fact declared by a random website; it is a fact declared by all those who fight against mass production of food and therefore, poor treatment of animals and of humans who eat them. Furthermore, statistics point out to an increase in the rate of suicide of small farmers who are being driven out of business due to the rise of factory farming and the slogan "get big or get out," which few can achieve without compromising their morals.

Flashback

Yet our society has seen this kind of cruelty and these kind of disgusting conditions for animals before. Is it possible that we do not remember Upton Sinclair's The Jungle? This book was written now a mere century ago, yet it rings true today in a similar way in which it rang true back then. Upton Sinclair was a poor man who simply remade American society through his great novel. Some would say that Sinclair filled the book with disgusting details about the meat-packing industry of the turn of the 20th century, but this was true research, and an astonished nation had to read it.

The book was, needless, to say, an instant best-seller. Sinclair told of how "dead rats were shoveled into sausage-grinding machines; how bribed inspectors looked the other way when diseased cows were slaughtered for beef, and how filth and guts were swept off the floor and packaged as 'potted ham,'" according to a biographical site. Thankfully, Americans did not look the other way: they listened. The public soon demanded reform in the meat industry and even the President of the United States lobbied congress to pass a law, which established the Food and Drug Administration, and never again let this kind of this happen. This is what we must do today.

Though we now have laws to guard inspection of our food, our animals are now being treated just as poorly alive as they were being treated dead in the dawn of the previous century. In the film Food, Inc. one sees a cow sitting in its own two feet of filth, and manure is known to transmit the most dangerous of diseases (hence, E.coli). The conditions are deplorable, but so is the use of antibiotics to fatten up our animals to match our ridiculous demands for better thighs on a chicken or a meatier, fatter steak. Though corporations are to blame, the public must realize that it has allowed the "crowding of more and more animals into less and less space" (Food, Inc.) by not paying attention and turning a blind eye to the deplorable conditions in which animals live, according to the film.

Sweeping Change

The only way to change things is to listen and spread the word that although our businesses must thrive, we must also learn to appreciate our environment and what our animals can give us organically. The statistics that are weighing down our nation (literally) are quite astonishing, and some are provided below to further conclude the paper. However, we must not forget the treatment of our animals, and must fight for their rights, as they are unable to.

This next paragraph will thus provide a few more concluding statistics gathered from the history of Factory Farming, referenced below, simply to illustrate the afore-made point:

In 1950, an average dairy cow produced 665 gallons of milk per year but now they produce over 2,320 gallons per year.

A newborn piglet weighs in at about 2 pounds but in six months it is hitting the scales at 260 pounds; much more than 6-month-old pigs weighed 50 years ago.

Chickens now reach slaughter weight in about 47 days compared to 70 days a few decades ago and they are 67% heavier than 1950 vintage birds.

1973 Government starts subsidizing corn

1976 McDonald's hits the 20 billion burger mark

1980' - '90's, fast evolves to the food of choice

(all statistics from Evolution of Factory Faming - http://www.factory-farming.com/factory_farming.html)

I also include a table, below, to illustrate obesity rates in America according to the Center for Disease Control and Prevention:

Please also note these works cited, which have been referenced throughout:

1906: Upton Sinclair." The Capital Century -- 100 Stories of New Jersey History. Web. 07 June 2011. .

"About the Film." Official Food, Inc. Movie Site - Hungry For Change? Web. 07 June 2011. .

"America's Biggest Food Companies." Analysis & Opinion. Web. 07 June 2011. .

"Evolution of Factory Farming." Factory Farming. Web. 07 June 2011. .

Food, Inc. Dir. Robert Kenner. 2008. DVD.

"Obesity and Overweight for Professionals: Data and Statistics: U.S. Obesity Trends | DNPAO | CDC." Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. Web. 07 June 2011. .

Presented By. "The Business: The Food Industry and the next Big Crisis | Business | Guardian.co.uk." Latest News, Comment and Reviews from the Guardian | Guardian.co.uk. Web. 07 June 2011. .

Schlosser, Eric. Fast Food Nation. Harper Perrenial, 2002. Print.

"TLC Cooking "The History of Fast Food" TLC Cooking "Food and Recipes" Web. 07 June 2011. .

Tyson.com. Web. 07 June 2011. . [END OF PREVIEW]

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