A Calf Will Breed with His Mother? How the Meat Industry Defends Incest

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incestEver wonder why the pork and beef industries routinely cut animals’ testicles out without painkiller? Well, you might be surprised by what one industry journal is recommending factory farmers tell you.

In trying to find a way for such an inhumane and agonizing practice to “gain more public acceptance,” industry publication The Western Producer suggests in its recent article titled: “Listen to Consumers; Offer Educated Answer”:

“It is better when defending castration to urban residents to tell them that a calf will breed with its own mother and sisters if it isn’t castrated. Daley said they can accept the incest explanation better than being told it makes the meat better and reduces behaviourial problems in the herd.”

Yes, the “incest explanation” – it’s yet another sad example of the industry demonstrating that it’s simply out of step with how consumers know animals ought to be treated. While the article notes that “branding, dehorning and confined housing seem cruel to urban dwellers,” it fails to consider that perhaps such acts are deemed cruel because, well, they are indeed just that: cruel.

Rather than look for new ways to publicly defend abusive and archaic practices that other countries are already relegating to the dustbin of history, perhaps it’s time for the meat industry to accept what the public already knows: some practices are simply too cruel to defend, no matter how creatively you try to spin it.

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