What Turkey Farming Should Mean
The free-range-turkey raised for our food, may have been victim to inhumane-turkey-farming practices. The consuming of turkey at all is a controversial subject among many for a few reasons.
There are those who don't believe that animals should be
slaughtered for our consumption under any circumstances period. In other words, we have enough resources without doing that, and this is typical of the vegan lifestyle.
There are those who will continue to eat turkey or stop completely, but criticize the turkey-farming industry due to inhumane practices. They may very well have a point.
Free Range vs Organic Turkey
First of all, free-range-turkey is not to be confused with organic-turkey.
Organic-turkey is free of the hormones, chemicals and antibiotics, that are frequently overfed to the birds.
Many times the process to certify "organic" is not done because it's apparently costly. These birds should be grain-fed, and
free to roam in much larger spaces, and able to pick at normal things they would eat that they find on the ground like bugs and the natural vegetation. An organic-turkey can also be free-range in the positive sense of the word as well.
What happens with the birds loaded with chemicals, is that they become extremely top heavy. They grow way too fast and their legs can't support their weight. They suffer painful crippling
In tightly over-crowded situations, they can become trampled because they can barely move in their painful condition.
It is very common that periodically, dead birds have to be removed from the group quickly to avoid contamination
in such a close and tight environment.
As for the free-range-turkeys, we tend to view them in a different way.
Birds are raised commercially strictly for food.
Many of us have eaten turkey, and will continue to do so. We justify it in our minds that at least if we are going to consume turkey, this is the type to eat. They are free range. We take into consideration of how they were much more humanely raised.
Free-range implies exactly how it sounds. Free to roam in the wide open spaces. It brings to mind visions of "happy birds" having a great life getting lots of excercise, pure food, and breathing the freshest of air up until the time of slaughter.
Free range-though, can mean other things to other people.
Access to outside areas is one thing, but the size of that space outside the main confinement area can be another thing altogether.
This doesn't necessarily mean it's a large space at all, and from what I understand, there are no set guidelines.
Overcrowding still takes place in these tiny areas and conditions aren't the greatest here either.
Thousands of turkeys at once can be stuck in areas loaded with fecal waste and foul smelling air from the ammonia from their own urine.
What is viewed also as inhumane-turkey-farming methods even at free-range-turkey farms are the beak and toenail removals which are are extremely painful, and makes normal
eating and walking functions very very difficult. It's not like these birds are unable to feel what's going on; they feel it all.
Overall, many birds can and do suffer severe health problems and die early from heart failure, being too overweight, and by trampling. This doesn't begin to address what awaits the ones who live through that and get to the slaughtering process at some places.
Many of you, like myself, are meat-eaters and animal lovers at the same time. It's conflicting now having seen some very gruesome photos of what can go on out there. Hard to get out of my mind.
The fact still remains that animals are raised for
consumption commercially and we may or may not continue to partake of that.
Not everyone in this industry is involved in inhumane-farming-practices when it comes to their birds. Remember this!
The best thing we can do is at least be as aware and informed as we possibly can. There are in fact many free-range-turkeys who
aren't victims of inhumane turkey farming methods if that makes it any easier to continue buying them, I don't know.
It's something people have to make their minds up about individually for themselves, and also decide on their own version of what's humane and what isn't.
If you are specifically looking for organic-turkey and/or free-range-turkey, ask questions. Ask about where these birds are coming from. You may or may not be shocked at what you
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