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Is it natural to kill animals for food?

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Comments

  • Former MemberFormer Member Posts: 1,876,328 The Mix Honorary Guru
    ShyBoy wrote: »
    MSE is even giving out advice now to families and such to downgrade their shopping so instead of buying from M&S buy from Aldi.

    I don't think anybody is saying we should shop at M&S. TBH I think M&S for food is just an upmarket version of Iceland... the only difference is M&S ready meals taste good.

    There's nothing wrong with Aldi - it's perfectly adequate for most things. However, nobody with any respect for food is going to get Aldi or Tesco Value meat. I hardly ever meat because I can't afford any that's of reasonable quality... anyway shitty value frozen chicken isn't healthy.
    minimi38 wrote: »
    cheap meat isnt automatically cruel. the problem really only lies with eggs and chickens. a lot of meat is cheap as its an undesirable cut or there is a large quanitity of it, e.g. pork mince, chuck steak etc.

    True.

    Also, slightly off-topic but as is often pointed out, the idea of supermarkets being cheap is a bit of a myth... my local market generally always seems to be cheaper for fruit and veg.
  • Former MemberFormer Member Posts: 1,876,328 The Mix Honorary Guru
    I don't mean that they are pets. Pigs are treated just as terribly as poultry are in the food industry.

    Not legally they arent.

    Just because something will eventually be eaten is no reason to treat it badly.

    I agree and i didnt say otherwise.
    Sorry for the tangent, I was just responding to minimi's ill informed comments.
    I agree with what you say though, it's not wrong to eat meat but it shouldn't be considered the way it is today.

    I suggest researching the minimum welfare standards for pigs before calling me ill informed. Being intensively farmed doesnt mean they are treated cruelly, even though they could easily be treated a lot better.
  • Former MemberFormer Member Posts: 1,876,328 The Mix Honorary Guru
    minimi38 wrote: »

    I suggest researching the minimum welfare standards for pigs before calling me ill informed. Being intensively farmed doesnt mean they are treated cruelly, even though they could easily be treated a lot better.

    Oh go on, kid yourself that it's ok because the welfare standards say so, and 'its nice to live in a modern society' (what kind of an arguement is that anyway, living in a developed society shouldn't mean we should accept cruelty, we should be trying to eliminate it).

    And no, being intensively farmed doesn't, and shouldn't, mean cruelty but in a lot of cases it does - because unfortunately caring for the animal costs money. Yes, conditions are better for pigs and cows compared to what happens to chickens (utterly appalling) but that doesn't mean it's any sort of life for the animal. Just because it's not as bad as something else doesn't make it right.

    The practices are unacceptable, legal or not - and the only reason they're legal is because any government who tried to change the laws regarding animal cruelty would make themselves so unpopular with the millions of people who can't see past the end of their plate when it comes to the choice between animal suffering and a cheap roast chicken (with money left in the pocket for afters).

    ETA: sorry for diverging into animal cruelty, I know the thread is about whether it's natural to eat meat but I don't think you can have that debate without discussing today's standards which I don't think are 'natural' at all
  • Former MemberFormer Member Posts: 1,876,328 The Mix Honorary Guru
    kangoo wrote: »
    Oh go on, kid yourself that it's ok because the welfare standards say so, and 'its nice to live in a modern society' (what kind of an arguement is that anyway, living in a developed society shouldn't mean we should accept cruelty, we should be trying to eliminate it).

    That was in response to the "back in the old days.." and "its seen as bad if we cant have what we want when we want" type comments.

    I dont take it for granted that i dont have to eat giblets or knuckles because of the cost of food. I enjoy having that choice and with meat that comes from prperly treated animals theres nothing wrong with that.
    And no, being intensively farmed doesn't, and shouldn't, mean cruelty but in a lot of cases it does - because unfortunately caring for the animal costs money. Yes, conditions are better for pigs and cows compared to what happens to chickens (utterly appalling) but that doesn't mean it's any sort of life for the animal. Just because it's not as bad as something else doesn't make it right.

    UK cows are grass fed and live a perfectly fine life up until slaughter. Why dont you direct some of your anti-meat/veggie anger to all the calfs slaughtered so people can drink milk and eat cheese?

    Also, visit a pig farm or two you might be surprised. They are treated fine and their lives are in no way comparable to battery or value chickens.

    The practices are unacceptable, legal or not - and the only reason they're legal is because any government who tried to change the laws regarding animal cruelty would make themselves so unpopular with the millions of people who can't see past the end of their plate when it comes to the choice between animal suffering and a cheap roast chicken (with money left in the pocket for afters).

    "The practices"? You'll have to be more specific. Ive claimed minimum welfare standards for pigs are adequate, that i've seen a couple of pig farms and that any abuse is probably illegal so i cant take you seriously if you say "the practices" without being specific.
  • Former MemberFormer Member Posts: 1,876,328 The Mix Honorary Guru
    I remember killing something one day and regretting it afterwards. So for me killing an animal myself for food is not something I would do but if another person chooses to, thats their choice.
  • Former MemberFormer Member Posts: 1,876,328 The Mix Honorary Guru
    Skive wrote: »
    :yes:
    Natural is life and death and everything inbetween.


    Still, I think your being a little pedantic - you know that 'natural' here is being used to determine what is or isn't ordinary human behaviour.

    Maybe, but everything under the sun has been normal human behavior at some point in time in some culture, from cannibalism, ritual sacrifice to sex with children.

    It's surprising how quickly current standards of what's considered normal behaviour get thrown out of the window when the chips are down and how far socialisation and personal experience can go.

    Going back on topic, people are so removed from the process of where their meat actually comes from that any sort of commentary on whether it's 'natural' or not just seems like hollow moralising one way or the other. It's easy to say 'it's natural to eat meat' when you just pop into tesco and pick up a pre-packed slab; in some peoples minds they don't even make the connection that they're buying a slab of flesh. Inversely, it's easy to say it's unnatural to eat meat when you've never felt real hunger, have easy accessible sources of grains, preservatives, refrigeration and all the other modern marvels that make vegetarianism a viable option.

    My personal view on the matter is if you're not capable of killing and eating your own food you should really consider whether you should be eating meat in the first place. One specfic instance that I couldn't fathom was a few weeks ago at work where a colleague mentioned she was against animal testing for drugs (ironically she works in pharmacy). I asked if she still ate meat, she did. I wonder how someone can hold the ideas that 'cruelty' to animals is fine and dandy for a bacon sandwich but completely out of order if it's to save millions of lives. She echoed what I said here: all she does is goes to the supermarket and buys it so it doesn't 'directly effect' her. I tried to tell her of the horrible things they do to chickens; she didn't want to know because it'd put her off. Even more strange to me was that this conversation was after a presentation on the relicensing of thalidomide.

    I've shot and ate my own food:

    pigshot.jpg

    It's not a pleasant experience. It's all fun and games up until you pull the trigger, even worse when you have to finish them off 'manually'. But I still do it with no guilt but it doesn't get 'easier'. I always feel personally obliged to eat everything I shoot though, otherwise I feel it's taking life a little too lightly; even if it's just a pigeon.
  • SkiveSkive No discipline! No morality! No respect! New ForestPosts: 14,938 Part of the furniture
    kangoo wrote: »
    I know the thread is about whether it's natural to eat meat but I don't think you can have that debate without discussing today's standards which I don't think are 'natural' at all

    Today's standards?

    You give the impression that most farming methods are cruel, they are not.

    The majority of pigs being farmed in this country do not suffer from bad farming practices. Cattle and Sheep have good quality of life in this country. Poultry farming is where the majority of dodgy practices can be found.
  • Former MemberFormer Member Posts: 1,876,328 The Mix Honorary Guru
    Agree that (AFAIK) the biggest issue is with poultry.

    Having said that, freedom of movement is not everything. I'm sure things are better now due to BSE, but some farmers used to feed pretty unbelievable things to their animals (which is indeed why BSE happened in the first place).

    I'm not so sure about the living conditions of some of the farmed salmon either...
  • Former MemberFormer Member Posts: 1,876,328 The Mix Honorary Guru
    I think the only reason people complain is because they have the luxury of complaining. I think some people miss the point that these are staple foods and people are definately price sensitive at least at the lower end. And definately I think picking on those who have to eat the inferior food is just picking on people who can't afford to spend as much on food.

    That reality just doesn't seem to add up in some people's minds.
  • Former MemberFormer Member Posts: 1,876,328 The Mix Honorary Guru
    I've finished off a whole selection of mice, rats and birds which my cat has brought in half dead but I cant say I've been tempted to eat any of them.
  • Former MemberFormer Member Posts: 1,876,328 The Mix Honorary Guru
    kangoo wrote: »
    All I can say to the people who buy value meat and eggs knowing full well what the animal has been through, you should be disgusted with yourself. You're either in serious denial about the horror of what happens to the animal before it reaches your plate, or you can't possibly have a heart. It's one of the two.

    Get off your high horse ffs.
  • SkiveSkive No discipline! No morality! No respect! New ForestPosts: 14,938 Part of the furniture
    kangoo wrote: »
    All I can say to the people who buy value meat and eggs knowing full well what the animal has been through, you should be disgusted with yourself. You're either in serious denial about the horror of what happens to the animal before it reaches your plate, or you can't possibly have a heart. It's one of the two.

    I wish you'd watched Jamies Ministry Of Food last night.
    Once scene perfectly demonstrated how some people struggle to eat properly let alone ethically.

    People that eat value meat don't have a heart? wtf.
    It's just most people look and worry after themselves and their family before that of the animal on their plate, and I think that's fair enough.
  • Former MemberFormer Member Posts: 1,876,328 The Mix Honorary Guru
    Human beings are hunter gatherers.

    In some parts of the world, it is a necessity to kill and eat animals. However, you can be a vegan and be perfectly healthy (vegetarians statistically live longer, I'm not sure about the research for veganism).

    So humans can be 'naturally' vegan, 'naturally' vegetarian, 'naturally' pescatarian (ect) depending on the food they are offered and their moral choice.

    I don't think 'natural' is the right word to be honest... We can digest a lot of things, we are incredibly adaptable animals.

    Some of us live in the position where we can make a moral choice, others do not. Many Hindus are lactovegetarian, many Jains are vegan... There are people all over the world who choose to abstain from meat for moral, health, or spiritual purposes. Are we going to call them unnatural?

    Nah... They are doing what they believe is right because as a species, we have the ability to function on a higher intellectual plane in that respect, to non human animals.

    I think the subject is a huge one.
  • SkiveSkive No discipline! No morality! No respect! New ForestPosts: 14,938 Part of the furniture
    Namaste wrote: »
    There are people all over the world who choose to abstain from meat for moral, health, or spiritual purposes. Are we going to call them unnatural?

    Nobody here suggested they were 'unnatural'.
  • Former MemberFormer Member Posts: 1,876,328 The Mix Honorary Guru
    Skive wrote: »
    Nobody here suggested they were 'unnatural'.

    Exactly.
  • Former MemberFormer Member Posts: 1,876,328 The Mix Honorary Guru
    Skive wrote: »
    Nobody here suggested they were 'unnatural'.
    I didn't say they do.

    But to suggest something is 'natural' is surely suggests that the opposite behaviour isn't natural.

    :confused:

    Hence I don't believe that it is natural to kill animals for food. It is natural to want to survive, that is all. Anything else is a moral choice.
  • Former MemberFormer Member Posts: 1,876,328 The Mix Honorary Guru
    Skive wrote: »
    Today's standards?

    You give the impression that most farming methods are cruel, they are not.

    The majority of pigs being farmed in this country do not suffer from bad farming practices. Cattle and Sheep have good quality of life in this country. Poultry farming is where the majority of dodgy practices can be found.

    Depends on what you would call cruelty?

    The UK has better animal welfare standards than say... In the states. However, many people would consider killing an animal for 'pleasure' (as meat is a luxuary in the UK) to be cruel.
  • Indrid ColdIndrid Cold Warming up? Posts: 16,688
    Namaste wrote: »
    But to suggest something is 'natural' is surely suggests that the opposite behaviour isn't natural.
    It's perfectly natural to get the flu. Does that mean that it's unnatural not to? :p
  • SkiveSkive No discipline! No morality! No respect! New ForestPosts: 14,938 Part of the furniture
    Namaste wrote: »
    I didn't say they do.

    But to suggest something is 'natural' is surely suggests that the opposite behaviour isn't natural.

    That's not logical is it?
    Hetrosexual sex is completely natural, by your logic homosexual sex is unnatural.
    Namaste wrote: »
    Hence I don't believe that it is natural to kill animals for food.

    It's in human nature, it's instinct to eat other animals.

    Namaste wrote: »
    However, many people would consider killing an animal for 'pleasure' (as meat is a luxuary in the UK) to be cruel.

    It's not cruel it's life. Death isn't cruel, it's death and as much a part of excistance as life is.
    And any food in the UK considered a luxury, because we thankfull are in a situation where we can choose what we eat.
  • Former MemberFormer Member Posts: 1,876,328 The Mix Honorary Guru
    Skive wrote: »
    That's not logical is it?
    Hetrosexual sex is completely natural, by your logic homosexual sex is unnatural.
    That is another debate isn't it? It depends on how you view sex, as sexual orientation and acting upon desire are two different things. As are sex for procreation and sex for bonding.
    It's in human nature, it's instinct to eat other animals.
    I disagree. I think that it is instinct to survive and this often includes eating animals. That is why human beings eat each other sometimes.

    That is why I am distinguishing between the drive to survive, which is what I consider to be nature and our ability to define what we see as right or wrong.

    I don't think we instinctually eat other animals, I think that is a gross over simplification. Instincts are not learned, they are innate. To say something is an instinct is to say that not to do it goes against instinct, as we are denying something that we are pre-programmed to do.
  • SkiveSkive No discipline! No morality! No respect! New ForestPosts: 14,938 Part of the furniture
    Namaste wrote: »
    That is another debate isn't it? It depends on how you view sex, as sexual orientation and acting upon desire are two different things. As are sex for procreation and sex for bonding.

    Of course it's another debate. I think you missed the point.
    Namaste wrote: »
    To say something is an instinct is to say that not to do it goes against instinct, as we are denying something that we are pre-programmed to do.

    Our biology is geared to having meat in our diet. We've been eating eating meat since the dawn of mankind and your denying we have an instict to hunt? It's one of the main reasons we play sport, it's a substitute for the lack of hunting we do.
  • Former MemberFormer Member Posts: 1,876,328 The Mix Honorary Guru
    Skive wrote: »
    I wish you'd watched Jamies Ministry Of Food last night.
    Once scene perfectly demonstrated how some people struggle to eat properly let alone ethically.

    That in reality had little to do with budget and much more to do with some adults just being completely unprepared for adult life.

    A mother who has never once cooked a meal for her kid isnt going to get magically healthy if she wins a million pounds.
  • Former MemberFormer Member Posts: 1,876,328 The Mix Honorary Guru
    I didn't see it, but I thought this was quite a good writeup

    Linky
  • Former MemberFormer Member Posts: 1,876,328 The Mix Honorary Guru
    go_away wrote: »
    I didn't see it, but I thought this was quite a good writeup

    Linky

    You can still watch it here:
    http://www.channel4.com/video/jamies-ministry-of-food/catchup.html

    I just watched it last night and thought it was quite good actually :)

    As Budda said it isn't completely about budget but I think it is a significant factor. I think a lot of people find it really hard to comprehend what living on that level of income can be like. The reason I say this is because my cousin does and they can't afford anything. They have to phone my mum up to get lifts to and from town and things like that. They need help just keeping up with the basics.

    I don't know how to articulate it but as Jamie said on the programme these people are desperate - so demonising them because they buy value range meat is not pausing to consider why they do that.
  • Former MemberFormer Member Posts: 1,876,328 The Mix Honorary Guru
    Merci :)

    I live with a chef, and he says that the true measure of a good cook is someone who can create a meal with things like the cheapest cuts of meat, and whatever else is lingering around in the back of the cupboard/bottom of the fridge. I've got friends and relatives who can follow recipes to the letter and produce something delicious, but stick some random ingredients in front of them and they'd be stumped.
    I don't know how to articulate it but as Jamie said on the programme these people are desperate - so demonising them because they buy value range meat is not pausing to consider why they do that.

    There's little use in telling people what to eat until they have the skills and motivation to actually cook the basics. As advertised, if someone can't recognise boiling water, they're hardly going to put buying meat surgically removed from happy lambs at the top of the list of their priorities. Give a man a fish, teach a man to fish and all that.
  • Former MemberFormer Member Posts: 1,876,328 The Mix Honorary Guru
    go_away wrote: »
    There's little use in telling people what to eat until they have the skills and motivation to actually cook the basics. As advertised, if someone can't recognise boiling water, they're hardly going to put buying meat surgically removed from happy lambs at the top of the list of their priorities. Give a man a fish, teach a man to fish and all that.

    Exactly, if someone doesnt even have a vague understanding of how cooking actually works (one of them had trouble turning on their own hob) then the budget issue is somewhat secondary.

    We will pay for this one way or another, either we put the investment in to try and help them, or we pay for it through increased NHS bills.
  • Former MemberFormer Member Posts: 1,876,328 The Mix Honorary Guru
    ShyBoy wrote: »
    I don't know how to articulate it but as Jamie said on the programme these people are desperate - so demonising them because they buy value range meat is not pausing to consider why they do that.

    If they seriously are that desperate there's MUCH cheaper alternatives than meat in that case! Vegetables, pulses, even vegetarian convenience foods are cheaper than even the value meat.

    How many of them buy a bag of quorn mince, or a pack of beanfeast (seriously cheap) to eek out mince? Not many I doubt. We didn't have a lot when I was younger so my mum used to use porridge oats to make mince go further, we used to eat liver and rabbit because it was cheaper. And we didn't eat meat for every meal purely because WE COULDN'T AFFORD IT. We ate meat from local butchers, not mass produced farms, and it was eeked it out to make it last. But it wasn't a problem

    And yeah I do know what it's like to not be able to afford what I want in the supermarket. Last year my essential outgoings were the same as my wage (sometimes more) so I had NOTHING to spare. As I said before, we make less than £30 easily last a week for two people for all three meals a day and we eat comfortably, I could reduce that further if I had to and still eat healthily. It really does sound like excuses to me

    I think I was a little black and white earlier in my arguments. My main problem is with chickens, as a lot of people have pointed out cows and sheep live a fairly good life out in the fields - I know this is true and don't really have a problem with that. There's still problems with pig farming from what I'm aware with some of the enclosures beings too small, but agreed it's not comparable to chicken farming (which is where my anger is mainly directed).
  • Former MemberFormer Member Posts: 1,876,328 The Mix Honorary Guru
    Put it this way - is it any use telling someone of the joys of English literature and plonking a beautiful hardback in front of them, saying how superior it is in every way to the trashy, cheap Heat magazine - if that person can't read? And finish off with a bollocking because they choose to watch TV?
  • Former MemberFormer Member Posts: 1,876,328 The Mix Honorary Guru
    go_away wrote: »
    Put it this way - is it any use telling someone of the joys of English literature and plonking a beautiful hardback in front of them, saying how superior it is in every way to the trashy, cheap Heat magazine - if that person can't read? And finish off with a bollocking because they choose to watch TV?

    So basically - people can't cook, so have to buy more expensive convenience foods, so their money doesn't stretch as far, so have to buy meat at the cheapest price they can

    I still think it's a bit of an excuse. You can learn how to cook, any eejit can follow a recipe. I left home 5 years ago not knowing how to cook a thing and I make pretty much all my meals from scratch. I spend less than half an hour in the kitchen after work

    And again, if people really are desperate then why the hell aren't they learning how to cook! It's really not rocket science, a baked potato in the oven, pasta with a jar of sauce, a stir fry is one of the simplest and quickest meals available. I learned pretty quick when I moved out that if I could learn to make a meal with the basic ingredients then I could live a lot cheaper

    But the thing it really comes down to is are people actually bothered? When cheap meat is available, no they're not. They're not bothered about learning how to cook when you can buy cheap processed food, the cost to the animal just doesn't matter. There's ways around it but people don't want to know. I think it's sad

    But this discussion has got a bit sidetracked (sorry!) and we're onto a different debate now!
  • Former MemberFormer Member Posts: 1,876,328 The Mix Honorary Guru
    kangoo wrote: »
    So basically - people can't cook, so have to buy more expensive convenience foods, so their money doesn't stretch as far, so have to buy meat at the cheapest price they can

    I still think it's a bit of an excuse. You can learn how to cook, any eejit can follow a recipe. I left home 5 years ago not knowing how to cook a thing and I make pretty much all my meals from scratch. I spend less than half an hour in the kitchen after work

    And again, if people really are desperate then why the hell aren't they learning how to cook! It's really not rocket science, a baked potato in the oven, pasta with a jar of sauce, a stir fry is one of the simplest and quickest meals available. I learned pretty quick when I moved out that if I could learn to make a meal with the basic ingredients then I could live a lot cheaper

    But the thing it really comes down to is are people actually bothered? When cheap meat is available, no they're not. They're not bothered about learning how to cook when you can buy cheap processed food, the cost to the animal just doesn't matter. There's ways around it but people don't want to know. I think it's sad

    But this discussion has got a bit sidetracked (sorry!) and we're onto a different debate now!

    Simple answer is that many people are lazy. Many are also just plain dumb. Combine the two, and well, that probably covers half of the UK population now...
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