Factory farming and the entire meat industry in general have long been regarded as such which is reeking with unethical practices and injustices for both the animals and humans directly and indirectly involved. Organizations such as Mercy for Animals which is an activist group that speak out against such poor treatment of the animals used for our consumption (SOURCE) while people such as Upton Sinclair became part of a catalyst for an industry wide revolution for the workers through his 1906 novel, The Jungle. There is without a doubt, a problem with this industry still to this day; however, to acknowledge the problems of the industry and then subsequently continuing to support the meat industry is unethical in light of the practical and viable options which are available to individuals in developed countries.
Throughout human history, conservation of the earth has been an active issue. There seems to be a cycle of an industry beginning, expansion, then misuse/abuse and finally, after environmental consequences begin to have an impact on our existence, conservation or change occurs. A prominent example of conservation is with the deforestation of the rainforest in South America, which has had a large impact on our ecosystem due to the loss of habitat and decrease of trees.(SOURCE) Conservation and becoming eco-friendly is especially important due to the toll the earth has taken through pollution, radiation, loss of wildlife, etc. The better we treat this earth now the longer our future generations can thrive on the planet without having major issues such as air pollution seen in Beijing currently (SOURCE) or radiation poisoning in Fukushima which will impact humans and animals for an unforeseen amount of time at this point (SOURCE). It is in our best interest to be good stewards of the earth to help perpetuate human flourishing.
The way the meat industry currently operates has a prominent impact on our environment. According to Bryan Walsh of Time magazine (2013), recent global impact reports show that livestock production may have the largest impact on our global environment from air and water pollution due over production as well as inefficient production. The Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations released, in 2006, a publication which looked over the environmental impact of livestock on the planet. The conclusions found from that report are that up to 70% of grazing land is considered degraded, livestock contributes in CO2 approximately 18% of the climate change, and livestock accounts for about 37% of methane emissions.As we continue to find out the extent of the effects of these things, we must take these things into consideration. Presently, however, the conclusions found from this report among others the impact on the environment is substantial and at unsustainable levels for the near and far future.
Factory farm bred animal meat is not the only viable option for meat and /or protein sources. Newly synthesized in late...