by Tandis Bishop
There is a new label in the health food market regarding meat products - “certified humane.” That label might have some legitimacy to it if you were buying a cow to bring home as a pet. But to call animal slaughter “humane,” no matter how it is done, is a stretch.
If you look at the lives of animals raised for their flesh, certainly some are treated better than others. They call it “humane” because the animals are given clean water and hormone-free food, and have some room to move around and access to real (or artificial) sunlight every day. If that’s all it takes to be “humane,” it should open eyes to just how inhumane the treatment is for the rest. It is good that people are realizing how badly animals are treated before they are slaughtered, but slaughter is by its very nature cruel and inhumane.
Herein lies another problem for these new meat marketers. Quoting the owner of a major East coast health food store chain that sells “certified humane” meat, "Our biggest challenge right now is trying to find an appropriate way to tell the customers what certified humane means.” Retailers want to negate the guilt of customers, but at the same time, they have to gently reveal the revolting conditions that non “certified humane” animals are raised and killed in.
Another major retailer plans to use the term “animal compassionate.” They are also taking the matter a step farther and donating some of their proceeds to animal rights groups. But if they really felt compassion for these animal’s rights, then they wouldn’t be carrying their meat in the first place.
The bottom line is, if you want to be “humane” or “animal compassionate” be real about it. Don’t settle for the hypocrisy of people trying to make a quick buck by manipulating your emotions. Do the real humane thing and go vegetarian.