Recently I watched a video called Farm to Fridge on the internet. The film is disturbing. It shows the workings of a slaughterhouse, where we see animals being slaughtered. A newborn pig undergoes sterilisation without anaesthesia - an extremely painful process. The video also shows a butcher killing a pig in a bloody manner.
We are shown how animals at the farm are maltreated. They are dehorned and have their tails cut off without pain relief. They are then packed and pressed together so close that they cannot move and can barely breathe.
I am not a vegetarian. But I think there should be ways to produce food properly. We should also eat less meat to ensure that fewer animals are made to suffer on our behalf. We do not have the right to exploit other creatures just for our own benefit.
Patrick Chan Pak-nin, Fung Kai Liu Man Shek Tong Secondary School
From the Editor
Thank you for your letter, Patrick. Industrial meat production can be a horror story. As people have moved from farms into cities, fewer people are farming, but we need food more than ever before. To meet this demand, farmers and scientists have found ways to produce the most meat at the cheapest price. The end result is factory farms. It is lovely to think that animals spend their lives in bliss on green farms, listening to music, and then just fall asleep so that we can turn them into hamburgers. But that is not the reality.
Just because we eat animals does not mean we have to be cruel. Eating less meat is one way to help the Earth. Eating different cuts of meat, instead of just the best cut, will also help. Reducing demand, though, is only half the story. Very often it just means that the product will become cheaper and only farmers who cut corners will be able to produce meat. If you have the time, you can find out where your meat comes from and make sure that you support those farmers who are kind to their animals.