18 votes
Accepted

What percentage of farm animals are mistreated in some way?

Chickens Egg-laying hens An estimated 95% of all eggs in the United States are produced in conventional cage systems, sometimes called battery cages. [They] typically provide each laying hen an ...
14 votes

Which one promotes the most deforestation: raising crops or animal husbandry?

A relevant point is that raising animals for food requires feeding them plants. Since only around 10% of the energy input (the percentage used for growth) at one trophic level of a food chain can be ...
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12 votes
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How much more would beef cost in the USA without government subsidies?

According to this video by MinuteEarth, a grocery bill of $200 including all kinds of food would cost an additional: $10 if not for various forms of government subsidies. $25 if people somehow paid ...
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  • 2,374
12 votes

Does the production of down typically involve killing or hurting birds?

Down is almost always collected from a live bird or from a bird killed for meat. There are 3 main ways: Live plucking, which you seem to already know about. The feathers are plucked from the live ...
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  • 2,380
10 votes
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Are there any farms that sell "cruelty-free" eggs (i.e. that don't slaughter older hens)?

There are probably not commercial farms that sell cruelty-free eggs as described by you, but it's likely that there are many individuals who keep a few chickens as pets and do not kill them after ...
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  • 668
10 votes
Accepted

What specific ethical concerns are there about the use of sheep's wool?

Like most livestock, wool sheep are tail-docked, castrated, and have their ears clipped. Sheep are also selectively bred to favor the ones with the most skin-folds/highest wool production, which ...
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  • 576
9 votes

How much more would beef cost in the USA without government subsidies?

This is a tricky question. As you pointed out, meat subsidies don't just come in the form of a check written from the government to the meat industries. As well as money, there are the lack of ...
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  • 576
8 votes

What specific ethical concerns are there about the use of sheep's wool?

According to sheep101.info, sheep have a natural life expectancy of 10 to 12 years. Despite this, a sheep's wool production begins to decline after 7 years. Therefore, farmers can produce more wool by ...
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  • 668
7 votes

Which one promotes the most deforestation: raising crops or animal husbandry?

There are two sides to your question: economics, and ecological impact. As Zanna explained the latter very well, and my experience is with the former, I'll focus on that. As a political economist, I'...
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  • 107
6 votes

Why are agricultural subsidies directed primarily towards animal agriculture?

Many of the subsidies are based on rationales that may not really be relevant to how the industry is set up now such as lots of independent small farmers producing output independent of each other. ...
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  • 161
6 votes
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How many animals are required by the average North American omnivorous diet?

Getting the exact figures requires a lot of effort, so I am going to concentrate in getting the order of magnitude. Also, another factor that makes the effort grow considerably is the various types of ...
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  • 3,570
6 votes
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Do commercial chicken's eggs contain B12?

In nature, poultry get their B12 by pecking for insects and worms in the dirt. Since this behaviour is not possible on industrial farms, B12 is added to animal feed1. According to the USDA, one ...
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  • 2,803
6 votes
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How to avoid being part of the slaughter of cockerels on the free-range egg farms?

Buying organic free range eggs does nothing for protecting the cockerels. This is for example critisied here (in german) by PETA. There are organizations, which do raise the cockerels for meat (e.g. ...
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  • 318
6 votes

Does a live animal tracking system for vegetarian products exist?

There are no live animal tracking systems like what you describe. I tried looking for live video streams from farms and I was able to find one video feed from a farm sanctuary in NY but of course ...
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  • 6,696
6 votes
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How are cows harmed in dairy farming?

In the most ethical dairy farm I could imagine while still having real cows and real farmers, but maybe not real economics, the dairy cows are harmed by having to give milk much longer than their ...
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  • 382
5 votes

Which are good documentaries about environmental impact of livestock industry?

I will write down a list that touch this subject and also received a decent rating on IMDB (a vague criteria of a movie/documentary quality): Earthlings - I have watched it a long time ago and it ...
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  • 3,570
5 votes

Is there an ethical alternative to mulesing? (Removal of wool-bearing skin from the breech of a sheep)

The Wikipedia page you reference also lists more ethical alternatives: Breeding programs to reduce susceptibility Insecticides Topical protein-based treatments which kill wool follicles and tighten ...
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5 votes

Documentaries in Spanish about environmental impact of meat industry?

A Carne É Fraca (or La Carne Es Débil, "Meat is Weak") is a Brazilian documentary about animal abuse in the meat industry. It has a CC-BY license (you are free to distribute it as long as you don't ...
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  • 1,777
5 votes

Do slaughterhouse workers suffer psychologically or become more violent?

Yes, slaughterhouse workers suffer psychologically and become more violent. The book Slaughterhouse (Gail A. Eisnitz, 1997) shares many anecdotes quoted directly from workers on slaughterhouse kill ...
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  • 6,696
4 votes
Accepted

How much land and water is used for farming animals?

Conclusion 8.06 quintillion liters, or 2.129 quintillion gallons, of water, is used each year for meat worldwide. 30% of Earth's land mass is used for these animals. How I got There Meat: About 20,...
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4 votes

How to spot when a study is sponsored by the meat industry?

I think this question is part of the bigger question: "How to find out who / what organization funded a study / research?". If a meat producer or organization is behind a study, most probably the ...
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  • 3,570
4 votes

What's the difference between legislation protecting pets and lab animals (etc) and farm animals in the U.S.?

So far as I know there is no federal legislation protecting farm animals on the farm (in the U.S.A.), with some legislation (but perhaps insufficient enforcement) protecting them at the slaughter ...
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  • 249
4 votes
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Does growing crops kill more animals than raising cows on pasture?

Assuming that the study estimating the 15 animals killed per ha of harvested crop is this one, it must be noted that the study was widely criticized for these and other mistakes and I would not in any ...
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4 votes

How common is it for the livestock industry to supplement B12?

There are a lot of interesting questions you pose and some are addressed in the article Do carnivores need Vitamin B12 supplements?. Let's first look at the claim that vegetarianism must be unhealthy ...
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  • 899
3 votes

Documentaries in Spanish about environmental impact of meat industry?

Cowspiracy is a good documentary about the environmental impact of animal agriculture, and it has Spanish subtitles.
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  • 1,377
3 votes

Which one promotes the most deforestation: raising crops or animal husbandry?

This is a false dichotomy. You can't raise (and breed) animals without growing plants to feed them. So it really boils down to which society is better for the environment: one which (1) purely grows ...
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  • 1,402
3 votes

Does the production of down typically involve killing or hurting birds?

Eiderdown is collected from the eider nests. Eiders are a duck that live on northern European and American coasts. They line their nests with the soft feathers from the duck's breast. The original ...
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3 votes
Accepted

Does buying whey increase demand for dairy?

No it’s a waste product that’s been repurposed. New Zealand has one of the largest dairy industries and only a fraction of the whey produced is used for human consumption (such as cheese and protein ...
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  • 1,402
3 votes

How are cows harmed in dairy farming?

If you only look at the body count: to have milk, there must be a calf. That animal won't get the food it needs (since we are taking the milk) and is slaughtered if it's a male (a female baby cow will ...
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