Friday, September 24, 2010

Factory Farms

This pile of dead pigs is sometimes used to illustrate factory farms.
It actually is from a Mexican farm after a swine flu outbreak in 2009.
I have tried for three days to write something interesting on factory farms, but I am giving up. This entry is an excuse to post the swine flu picture at right -- which you must admit -- is a pretty striking image.

My basic notion is that most large scale industrialized farms are actually "family farms" too. Sometimes statistics are shown about how corporations control large sectors of agriculture, but these only refer to meat packing and not to real agriculture.

"Factory farm" has become a pejorative for anything bad about farming.  Wikepedia says has a hard time defining the term too. They say that large scale corporate farms differ considerably around the world and by the type of animal raised.

I know people who have given up eating meat because of factory farms. It strikes me that so-called organic farms are not likely to be meaningfully different or better. There are probably better reasons to be vegetarian than factory farms.

This report from the Pew Center is on factory farms is pretty good. Not very interesting though: http://www.ncifap.org/

So that is what I have to say about factory farms. If you have anything more interesting to say about it, leave a comment.

I bet no one does.