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<div class="quote-container"><span>Quote:</span>
<div class="quote-block">Strauss Veal and Marcho Farms Eliminating Confinement by Crate<br><br>
February 22, 2007<br><br><br><br>
In a landmark announcement destined to move American animal agribusiness further away from intensive confinement systems, two of the nation's largest veal producers have recently committed to phasing out the use of tiny crates to confine veal calves.<br><br><br><br>
Strauss Veal, the leading U.S. veal producer, and Marcho Farms both pledged in January to convert their operations to crate-free group housing systems within two to three years. In these operations, while the calves most likely won't be able to go outside, they will be able to turn around, walk and socialize with other calvesall behaviors permanently denied to crated calves. Strauss Veal has also expressed interest in moving to free-range systems after it converts its crate operations to group housing.</div>
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<br><br><br><a href="http://www.hsus.org/farm/news/ournews/strauss_and_marcho_veal_crates.html" target="_blank">Full Story</a><br><br><br><br><br><br>
Gestation crates going out of style, and now veal crates? <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="/images/smilies/thumbsup.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title=":up:"> We're making some progress!
 

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"We're making some progress!"<br><br><br><br>
Maybe but I'm not sure.<br><br><br><br>
For example <a href="http://www.hsus.org/legislation_laws/ballot_initiatives/election_06_animals_win_.html" target="_blank">see this page</a>, linked to from the first story.<br><br><br><br><div class="quote-container"><span>Quote:</span>
<div class="quote-block">"Arizona voters stood up to factory farming lobby groups and affirmed that farm animals should have basic protections such as being able to turn around and extend their limbs," said Wayne Pacelle, HSUS president and CEO. "The overwhelming passage of Proposition 204 will not only help thousands of animals in Arizona, but will also send a message to factory farming operations across the country that they must end the most abusive practices."</div>
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Also note that
<div class="quote-container"><span>Quote:</span>
<div class="quote-block">The proposition attracted an avalanche of support across the state. Many newspapers... And endorsements flooded in from organizations such as... Individual endorsers included... Bill Niman, CEO of a network of 500 free-range pork producers.</div>
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500 free range pork producers supported this law!!!!<br><br><br><br>
And maybe some day, nearly all abusive practices will be ended and free range pork producers will be the norm instead of the exception, and people can stop feeling guilty and start eating more veal and more pork again, without having to ask "was this animal raised free-range" every time they order pork or veal in a restaurant.<br><br><br><br>
If all those people who supported this legislation had instead simply stopped eating pork and veal - which would seem to me to be a simpler and easier task than spending days and days in court arguing about how big a crate to put keep an animal in, before you kill it and eat it - and if the 500 companies that raise pigs had simply stopped raising pigs - then 1000's less pigs would have been raised and killed, maybe 100's of thousands - and these people would have sent a message to people that you can live without eating pigs and calves.
 

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Soilman, you make some good points, and I agree with you. However, I do not feel that it is realistic at this time to just hope that people will stop eating meat. Yes, some people might choose to eat meat from more 'humane' methods that they might not have eaten otherwise. But having huge producers such as this change their way of thinking and improving the lives of animals is a good thing. Not everyone cares how their veal was treated. Some people just like the taste and will eat it regardless of the suffering endured by the poor calf. This elimination of veal crates will ensure that none of the veal coming from these facilities will have been kept in these crates. And while that is far from a perfect scenario, it is just slightly better than the current situation.
 

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However, the increase in animal welfare will be determined by how they implement the new system. There are plenty of ways to screw up when keeping calves in pens that can easily result in them getting sick and dying.<br><br><br><br>
For example, when you have competition for milk some calves may miss out, and the solution is very careful monitoring or very expensive, automatic, individual, cafeterias.<br><br>
If the ventilation is not adequate then the calves will get amonia poisoning.<br><br>
If there is a draft then the calves can catch pnemonia.<br><br>
If a calf gets too much milk (which is easy with competitive systems since they all drink at different speeds) then it will get scours.<br><br>
If one calf gets viral or bacterial scours then it will quickly pass it on to the other calves in the pen.<br><br>
The pens would need to have a solid floor with wood shavings or sawdust, which would need to be changes every few weeks. Slated floors don't allow the calves to run.<br><br>
Any more than 12 calves per pen, and any less than 1.5m2 per calf will result in poor monitoring of individual calves, quicker degradation of the floor material, and faster spread of sickness.<br><br><br><br>
Seeing as how these farmers have been keeping baby calves in tiny crates for as long as they've been farming, I have serious doubts about whether they are likely to fulfill all of the above criteria for good welfare in raising calves in pens. Besides the fact that they intend to keep them inside for the whole time; the absolute maximum for maintaining the above conditions for calves in pens is one month. After that you're just asking for trouble.
 

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<div class="quote-container"><span>Quote:</span>
<div class="quote-block">Originally Posted by <strong>soilman</strong> <a href="/forum/post/0"><img alt="View Post" class="inlineimg" src="/img/forum/go_quote.gif" style=""></a><br><br>
If all those people who supported this legislation had instead simply stopped eating pork and veal - which would seem to me to be a simpler and easier task than spending days and days in court arguing about how big a crate to put keep an animal in, before you kill it and eat it - and if the 500 companies that raise pigs had simply stopped raising pigs - then 1000's less pigs would have been raised and killed, maybe 100's of thousands - and these people would have sent a message to people that you can live without eating pigs and calves.</div>
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Yeah, but look how many people on *here* do searches to find what they *think* are less cruel eggs and dairy (nevermind that all the male chicks are killed, animals are still sent to slaughterhouses, every calf is removed from it's mother, etc. etc. on even the "best" farms...) And many people here theoretically have some commitment to animal welfare. Most just don't want to give up the animal products and at best will go towards lesser cruelty.<br><br><br><br>
I guarantee that undercover video coming out of the "humane" veal farms will show intense cruelty. From the beginning when the calf is forcefully dragged away from his mother to the end when he is being led to a crowded transport truck to miserable slaughter.
 

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Baby steps, people, baby steps. The first step in getting people to change what they do is to get them to change how they think. Converting the entire world to vegan is a long term process that will take hundreds or thousands of years. But I do consider it a viable long term goal, and this is a baby step in that direction.<br><br><br><br>
This article shows that people aren't just thinking of baby calves as "veal", but many people are at least starting to see them as living, thinking, feeling beings that deserve better treatment before they're killed. It's a step in the right direction, because it indicates a shift in thinking in the right direction, which led to a shift in actions.<br><br><br><br>
It's not as big a step as most of us would prefer, but it's a worthwhile baby step. And hopefully it's a well publicized enough baby step to get more people thinking about it.<br><br><br><br>
--Fromper<br><br><img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="/images/smilies/juggle.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title=":juggle:">
 
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