3 Reasons We Need to Switch from Conventional, or Industrial Meat, to Regenerative
Pictures Speak a thousand words.
Feed lot on top, with the enormous grain field (full of fertilizers, monocropping killing the soil, leading to run off).
No soil or grass anywhere to be seen
Vs Rotational Grazing
An estimated 97% of the cattle slaughtered for meat are fed grains. Most of them are finished in concentrated AFOs, or CAFOs, which are feedlots that discharge manure or wastewater into a natural or man-made ditch, stream or other waterway. The concentration of manure in and around feedlots pollutes air and water, whereas well-managed grazing systems can regenerate grassland, build soil and protect watersheds.
“Industrial agriculture is one of the most unsustainable practices of modern civilization. The ‘bigger is better’ food system has reached a point where its real costs have become readily apparent.
Like water running down an open drain, the Earth’s natural resources are disappearing quickly, as industrialized farming drives air pollution, water pollution, deforestation, rising carbon emissions and the depletion, erosion and poisoning of soils.
The long-term answer, however, lies in the transition to sustainable, regenerative, chemical-free farming practices, not in the creation of food manufacturing techniques that replace farms with chemistry labs, which is the ‘environmentally friendly’ alternative envisioned by biotech startups and its chemists.”
Reason 1: Conventional Industrial farming is destroying the environment
Factory farms inhumanely confine, feed and drug 50 billion of the 70 billion farm animals on the planet,3 supplying McDonald’s, KFC, Burger King, et al., and the supermarket chains with the cheap, artery-clogging meat and dairy that are destroying our environment, climate and health.
Concentrated animal feeding operations (CAFOs) and the GMO soybean and corn farms that supply them are the No. 1 source of water pollution in the U.S.,4 as well as a major source of air pollution. Monsanto/Bayer’s GMO soybeans and corn for CAFO animal feed are the No. 1 destroyer of grasslands and forest in the Amazon basin and other areas.5,6
Reason 2: Conventional Industrial farming is destroying the climate
U.S. and international factory farm meat and dairy operations are also major drivers of global warming and climate change, spewing out massive amounts of CO2, methane and nitrous oxide emissions7 into the atmosphere from giant feedlots, hog and chicken complexes, manure lagoons and the chemical-intensive, GMO grain farms that supply “CAFO Nation” with millions of tons of taxpayer-subsidized animal feed every year.
Reason 3: Conventional Industrial Farming is a National Health Problem
Besides degenerating the environment and climate, CAFOs are primary drivers of our deteriorating public health as well. Filthy, inhumane, polluting, greenhouse gas-belching factory farms mass produce approximately 90 to 95 percent of the meat and animal products consumed in America today.
The average U.S. carnivore now supersizes and toxifies themselves with approximately 200 pounds8 of CAFO meat a year, loaded with bad fats (low in omega-3 and other key nutrients) and laced with antibiotic, pesticide and hormone residues that substantially increase a person’s chances of getting cancer, suffering from obesity, dying from an antibiotic-resistant infection, developing Alzheimer’s or having a heart attack.
Approximately 75 percent of all the antibiotics9 in the U.S. today are dumped into factory farm animal feed and water to keep the animals alive under the hellish conditions of intensive confinement as well as to force the animals to gain more weight.
This massive, reckless and often illegal use of antibiotics on factory farms (along with routine over-prescribing of prescription antibiotics by doctors) has begun to spread deadly antibiotic-resistant pathogens into our food, with an average of 90,000 Americans dying from antibiotic-resistant infections on an outpatient basis every year, according to the latest calculations by Cambridge University researchers, who noted that they believe the 23,000 deaths often quoted are far underreported.10
Conventional agriculture is strangling the earth. Switching to regenerative practices will replenish our natural resources and ensure we have a safe, healthy food system for years to come. Food, the way it is supposed to be.