Group Wants You to Consider Your Turkey’s ‘Feelings’ This Thanksgiving
No, we're not making this up.
Got an email from the Humane Farm Animal Care group (HFAC) based out of Virginia today. They wanted to know if I, or our Newstalk 870 listeners, would be purchasing a turkey for the holiday that had a chance to "flap it's wings, move around freely, or perch on the ground at night?"
Hmmm...hadn't checked. But apparently there's a new standard found in some grocery stores. The HFAC has partnered with some farmers who raise turkeys and other animal products we consume in stores, and these packages carry a sticker certifying the turkey was raised in a humane manner.
Apparently, if you see the sticker saying "Certified Humane" on the plastic, that turkey was raised in a humane manner, and doesn't contain any artificial fillers, drugs or additives. According to their website, 68% of consumers want to know what farms are doing to ensure humane treatment of their animals. That's not a question I have ever heard from any friends, family or other relatives at Thanksgiving. My father in law didn't ask us last year if the turkey was treated nicely before we cooked him.
But before you think they're just out to preserve the humane treatment of animals, they do point on their website a piece of information that claims the EPA (Environmental Protection Agency) "blames 70% of the pollutions of the nation's rivers and streams" on farming. Given the dozens - if not hundreds - of regulations and policies farms must follow just to stay in business, this quote seems rather ironic to include on a farming website. The EPA is NOT a popular group with the agriculture industry.
We applaud their stance that animals should not endure excessive cruelty or mistreatment, whether they're intended for human consumption or not. But this approach seems a bit over the top. Visiting the website, we saw where a person can make a donation to further their efforts, and they even have an App you can use to find stores that sell the Certified Humane products.
They have a variety of programs that extend similar "care" towards cows, pigs and other such animals. So keeping in tune with this line of reasoning, maybe think twice next time before choking a chicken? Throttling a turkey? Decking a duck? Ok - we will stop.