The global human population is increasing. Food has now become an important concern due to the increased population. The high population has reduced farming areas at the expense of building homesteads (Pollan, 2007). Wild animals have suffered the most. As a result, global meat production has decreased. A new trend has been developed. Animals are now domesticated specifically for meat production. Mixed opinions have resulted due to this new trend. Vegetarians have opposed this trend while the activists have taken to war with mass killings of animals to provide meat. The most affected animal is chicken. Many people keep chicken because it is a good source of protein. Initially, chicken production was done under the free-range system. The system has changed to a deep litter system. Here, chickens are confined in a poultry house.
They are fed from the house with little movement. This system has denied chickens the freedom to eat all nutritious food that occurs naturally in the environment (Pollan, 2007). Generally, all animals are confined with one aim of providing food. This trend has denied animals the basic fundamental animal rights to access proper nutrition and free life. Few traditional cultures have maintained respect for animal life as a basic component of human survival (Kalof, 2012). The advancement of industrialization has contributed to the massive processing of livestock products. Farming as a business is a new farming trend that has ignored alternative sources of food. This poses a great challenge and respect for nature. Therefore, it is important to develop changes that will respect the importance of animals in nature.
Problems and reasons of farming and animal consumption
The first problem with farming and animal consumption is its impact on the environment. Different farming methods contribute to environmental degradation. The obvious effects are environmental pollution and land degradation (Adler & Lawler, 2012). The first reason for environmental pollution is through processing. Meat processing plants are heavy industries. They emit greenhouse gases and require a lot of water to cool the engines (Koneswaran & Nierenberg, 2008). The by-products, containing toxic substances, are released to the rivers or other water bodies. Hence, both air and water are polluted.
The second problem of farming and animal consumption is competition for scarce natural resources. Water is the major natural resource being competed for. People have resorted to stocking many animals on small pieces of land (Weber& Matthews, 2008). Due to the increasing human population, water has become scarce. Animals require water for drinking and cultural practices like spraying. Humans too require water for domestic use and other recreational obligations. Therefore, competition sets in for this scarce commodity. For example, cattle require about 50 Litres of water per day (Adler & Lawler, 2012). Therefore, changes need to be made to reduce growing competition for water.
In conclusion, policies should be developed to ensure that food crop production remains higher than meat production. Therefore, farming and animal consumption is an important topic that can determine the survival of the environment, animals, and human beings. Although meat production is a source of food, it can not sustain the whole population. Some Individuals in a population are vegetarians on a religious basis. This group of people is affected more because most of the arable land is used for meat production.
Adler, J & Lawler, A. (2012). How the Chicken Conquered the World. Smithsonian magazine. Web.
Kalof, L. (2012). Making animal meaning. East Lansing, United States: MSU Press.
Koneswaran, G., & Nierenberg, D. (2008). Global Farm animal production and global warming: Impacting and mitigating climate change. Journal of Environmental health prospect, 116(5), 578-582.
Pollan, M. (2007).Omnivore’s dilemma: A natural history of four meals. New York, United States: Penguin press.
Weber, C. L.,& Matthews, H. (2008). Food-miles and the relative climate impacts of food choices in the United States. Journal of Environmental Science Technollogy, 42(10): 3508-3513.