COK Asks Federal Agencies: Don’t ‘Kill’ Slaughter-Free Meat

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Compassion Over Killing has joined the Animal Legal Defense Fund, along with other animal protection organizations, in submitting comments to the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) and the U.S. Dept. of Agriculture (USDA) regarding the regulation of slaughter-free meat. And this isn’t the first time COK has addressed “clean meat”: COK Executive Director Erica Meier spoke publicly before the agencies at meetings this summer and fall in Washington, DC.

As consumers grow more conscious of the suffering endured by animals raised on factory farms and slaughtered for meat, innovative technology is emerging that will allow companies to grow meat products without having to raise or slaughter animals.

Recent COK investigations have revealed gut-wrenching mistreatment of chickens who are punched and thrown by workers, and even sometimes drowned or scalded alive due to machinery malfunctions. This horrific treatment is common in the industry, which kills 9 billion chickens per year. As the federal government allows faster kill line speeds, the suffering could grow worse.

And if the meat industry has its way, it would swiftly “kill” the progress of slaughter-free meat, too.

In comments to the agencies, COK and the other signing organizations are urging the FDA and USDA not to bow to the profit-driven animal agriculture industry and its pressure to place unnecessary regulatory burdens on new technologies that represent progress for animals and consumers alike.

“We need a real alternative to this suffering. We need an alternative to cruel and inhumane conditions forced upon billions of animals. To artificial insemination, overcrowding, genetic manipulation, long transport, and slaughter. We need an alternative to abuse endured by animals who feel fear and pain. And to foodborne illness and proliferation of antibiotic resistant bacteria…Whatever hurdles stand between where we are now and a future that can provide a safer, more sustainable, and ethical alternative to the meat industry as it is now should be aided rather than hindered by regulation.” -COK Executive Director Erica Meier in oral comment to FDA and FSIS, October 23, 2018

The powerful animal agriculture industry, which would be in competition with slaughter-free meat products, is pushing for labeling regulations that could potentially ban clean meat from being labeled as what it is: meat.

In their letter, the organizations ask that the regulations the agencies develop be fair and transparent, and not let the meat industry squash competition.

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