It’s Blog Action Day, and while I generally cringe at putting my name next to anything promoted as a “blog”, this is a worthy cause as the theme is “inequality.” As someone who has been a vegan and animal rights activist for more than 20 years, writing about inequality in our food system is a no-brainer. It’s an important topic to discuss. From the food deserts, to the high price for healthy food, to the tons of it going into the trash while millions go hungry. But no issue is more pressing and more ignored than eating animals.
In a recent article published in Beef Magazine, readers were warned that while ISIS may be a threat to our freedom all the way over in the Middle East, we have other, much more serious dangers closer to home: namely animal welfare advocates.
After undercover reporters revealed animal cruelty at an Idaho dairy facility, guilty parties moved quickly to address the problem: almost immediately animal agriculture interests in that state introduced a bill to criminalize any reporting of such abuse. Idaho’s ag-gag bill passed the Senate earlier this month, then yesterday cleared the House. Now it only awaits a swipe of the governor’s pen to ensure that criminal prosecution focuses where it belongs: on people who tell you where your food comes from, and what’s done in your name to get it onto your plate.
GMOs in the news this week disrupt trade with China, while Americans clamor for labeling of genetically modified foods. Does food taste better when it’s organic? What if you only THINK it’s organic? Can you afford to eat food that won’t kill you? Can fast food workers afford to eat food at all? Could you be allergic to meat? Read on for these answers and more, from the week’s top food news!
This week’s news will make you cry, make you sigh, and make you smile. Some of it may even help you avoid diabetes, cancer, and kidney failure! New health research indicts meat and soft drinks, but encourages healthy eaters to go nuts. Animal factories continually find new ways to turn the stomachs of anyone who glimpses their work — and then they file charges against those who dare to see (and record) it. USDA proposes new anti-poop policies targeting organic farmers; but announces new projects supporting local food in public schools. Hawaii knocks the GMO-regulation ball right out of the park! In other breaking news, I suddenly want to move to Norway. Read on, for all the week’s top food news!
A group of animal welfare advocates, journalists and others recently filed suit against the state of Utah, in which plaintiffs claim the state’s year-old ag-gag law violates the U.S. Constitution. Though many states have joined the ag-gag craze, Utah was the first to attempt a (failed) prosecution under such a statute — and now boasts the first lawsuit to challenge the constitutionality of these anti-whistleblower anti-transparency pro-animal-cruelty laws.
When I can’t buy cage-free, locally-raised eggs, I find myself staring at my grocery store’s egg shelves, trying to decipher those cryptic egg carton labels. Learn what they really mean.
Following an outpouring of opposition from thousands of citizens, religious leaders, defenders of free speech and people working against animal cruelty, TN governor Bill Haslam just vetoed HB1191/SB1248 — aka ag-gag bill, aka anti-whistleblower bill, aka total BS legislation. Well done, Governor!
The governor’s office has been inundated by pleas for a veto, from thousands of citizens, religious leaders, defenders of free speech and people working against animal cruelty. Now TN’s Attorney General Robert Cooper has also chimed in against Tennessee’s ag-gag bill, calling it constitutionally questionable.
Utah prosecutors announced Tuesday they’re dismissing charges against Amy Meyer, the first person to be charged under Utah’s ag-gag law since its passage in 2012. Overwhelming national attention and public outrage immediately preceded the decision to dismiss charges, which were first filed in February. Naturally prosecutors avow that THE PUBLICITY HAD NOTHING WHATSOEVER TO DO WITH IT!!! … sure, guys — whatever you say! Regardless, Utah’s first effort at ag-gag enforcement has been an embarrassing flop, guaranteed to raise public awareness about the need to defeat these ugly laws. Thanks, Utah!
The dairy industry starts marketing to us practically from birth—kids are often exposed to its slick (and misleading) campaign materials at school. By the time we’re grown, we may think that we know milk well—but you might want to think twice before stopping at your supermarket’s dairy case.
Legislators in several states this month consider laws to criminalize reporting of cruelty or other criminal acts at animal facilities, to protect factory farming interests from the consequences of their own behavior. If you value food industry transparency — and DON’T value protecting criminal animal abusers from any and all legal culpability — get involved! Factory farming interests absolutely depend on your ignorance and apathy, to pass these laws: give them neither.
A recent HSUS undercover investigation revealed nine employees of Wyoming Premium Farms engaging in extreme animal cruelty, and charges were filed against perpetrators on Monday. As long as there’s a demand for huge amounts of cheap meat, and as long as producers can count on good people to look away, systemic abuse is inevitable. It’s also completely optional: you vote with your fork every single day, on whether or not this kind of cruelty should occur — and it’s just not that hard to vote ‘no!’