Question reworded for clarity.
Of course it seems obvious that to a degree it will..the real question is how much can it influence humane farming? Personally I see it having a greater influence than vegetarian or vegan. I once was a vegetarian for years in my younger days.
I hope so..that is my biggest thrill about Paleo..that consumers become much much more conscious about the whole cycle of life and responsible eating. It starts with a healthy animal and a healthy life for it..not just because it is grass fed but because it is living a grass fed life. Respect and appreciation for that which we consume.
HOw many see that as a big part of Paleo?For me it is 80% of the paleo.
The following is horror and sickening.This is not the first or last bad press on Tyson and their horrid practices and abuse of farmers. http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2012/05/08/wyoming-premium-farms-abuse-humane-society_n_1499707.html
and another disgusting case..you know what ought to happen to those ^%#87gud%^!! http://www.thedenverchannel.com/news/31027048/detail.html
Tyson does well because the food they sell is cheap. PLease never ever support anything they sell.
asked byjo60 (982)
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on May 12, 2012
at 03:03 AM
It seems clear to me that the paleo community as well as the other whole/real food communities are having an impact with regard to animal welfare. Simply from a supply/demand perspective the more we and others demand grass-fed/pastured animal products from local farmers the more change will come to the industrial food system. We shut the atrocious CAFO system down by growing other supply channels. We lower prices by increasing supply which will come in time. It's all happening WAY too slowly for me but yes there is change happening.
on May 12, 2012
at 05:18 AM
I think that we need to make some definitions first. Paleo is just a diet in the abstract, but the paleo movement/community/paleosphere is a whole different beast, it does contain non-diet-related aspects, philosophy and all of that. So when I say paleo I'm referring to the movement at large as you are. The paleo diet is just the diet.
The paleo diet will take people who would be eating industrial meat and get them to eat pastured meat because it it says that pastured meat is more paleo. This is an automatic improvement to humane treatment of animals over eating the industrial junk diet.
Compare paleo (the movement) to vegetarian/vegan then, and you will by definition find more of the latter making choices that are adequately concerned for the welfare of farm animals (I define it as caring about the mental states of animals when at all possible and not to one's detriment, that is a long discussion if you want an elaboration as to why I define it like that), however this doesn't necessarily contribute to animal welfare on a grand scale, which appears to be your end in itself. This is because vegan/vegetarian is an absolutist, rigid doctrine where you aren't allowed to kill any animal for anything ever period, end of story (although I'm sure you realize that it doesn't actually work out like that in the end what with field mice and insects and whatnot that die). Some still do, they give in to craving, and then they feel bad and repent, etc, but under those ideologies it is condemned...
And most people don't buy in because they don't feel like they have any good reason to take it that far. They like meat, far more than they value those animals, and their minds are made up. Done deal. Conversion: FAILED. The vegan position misses the opportunity for animal welfare in every single person who does not become a vegan, which is most people. In contrast, the happy animals, quick death approach is far more accommodating. Those animals get exponentially better lives and more people will buy into it, especially if it is said to be healthier than industrial meat. They say "I couldn't give up meat but I could certainly buy it from here and not there." It can be downright appealing to go to the rancher and meet them, and many people being exposed to paleo will end up doing just that.
So in actual reality paleo is a force for animal welfare, even if it doesn't get everyone to pick alternative sources of meat. Once alternative sources are more available and mainstream it will improve even more.
A good follow-up question is paleo + vegan movements vs. just paleo, that would be interesting! Paleo converts would-be vegans, wouldn't those vegans be better for animal welfare because they cut out the animal? That gets complex. Animals in the wild could have more anxiety than if handled in a particular way by ranchers, and vice versa. Depends on the way that they do it. I have no concerns with the treatment of animals by new techniques employed by many ranchers. They get better medical care too. Sweet deal. What happens when you don't slaughter an animal? Its demise at the end of its life is prolonged. I have had 5 guinea pigs in my life, and when they die they go through about two days of what appears to be sickness when they finally die. It doesn't look fun. Wouldn't a quick death like the bolt-stun-gun thing be preferable? I'd say so. And aging animals get weary and suffer just like humans.
And there are so many more issues that could be discussed, like whether or not cutting their lives short is wrong, and whether or not they would have been better off not living in the first place (obscure philosophical issue, takes us to a weeeeeird place), but this post is long enough already. Cheers.
on May 12, 2012
at 01:07 PM
This is a very interesting question, however I don't think there's a clear-cut answer???
One the surface, paleo folks seem concerned with animal treatment. They're anti-factory farm. They're for feeding the animal as it was designed to eat. Both positive things, and would hope that all folks start thinking about eating in this manner, paleo or not!
Now, the issue I'm having with paleo is their continued disconnection with food. Sure, they're not eating food-like products, like pre-packaged TV dinners and frozen pizzas. But let's face it, paleo folks, as a whole, still get pre-packaged sanitized meat wrapped in paper or plastic. They know the meat comes from an animal, and they're somewhat concerned with the animals husbandry, but largely that's a concern because of the perceived health benefits it gives them, not because of some desire to see animals raised humanely and ultimately worth of some respect.
It's a very serious thing to kill an animal.
I don't think paleo folks often understand this seriousness. Take a look at what paleo folks eat. You'll see so many folks, for lack of a better word, gorging on meat, pounds of it daily. You don't need to eat meat at every meal, you don't need to have huge portions of meat to attain adequate nutrition. In fact, it smacks of irresponsibility. Such a way of eating is unsustainable and unnecessary.
Paleo is a step in the right direction, but it's certainly not some enlightened endpoint.
on May 24, 2012
at 06:13 PM
There is no ethical way of consuming the flesh or secretions of other animals. You can argue the point until you are blue in the face, but using and eating animals is always unethical. It is always wrong. There is no magical farm that allows animals to truly be free, where animals are given the choice to share their eggs, their milk, their bodies, to be in complete control of their own bodies and lives, that allows animals to live until they meet a natural death, where male chicks can grow to an old age, where calves are permitted to live with their mothers, where animals decide if they wish to procreate, not be raped by "farmers." You can blather on about how well the animals are treated at the farm where you purchase the flesh and secretions of their slaves, but in the end, you know it's unethical.