Archive for Downsizer For an ethical approach to consumption

       Downsizer Forum Index -> Livestock and Pets

im confused , welfare rules deregulation?


i recon tis a badly written article but is the possible intention to make it easy for folk to understand what is good practice or is it to make bad practice acceptable in law and supermarket supplies cheaper?

Be simple and stay simple, it makes for a simple and happier life. As long as you do then don't quote me on that. Rolling Eyes
Rob R

Making codes push production out of the country is counter productive to my mind. You can have all the gold plated standards you like, but if you're being undercut by Thailand, there isn't much point to them.

Supermarkets welfare codes make the Bible look like a pamphlet.

a set of simple and good rules would be useful but if an industry writes them it may be simple but it may be "competitive" rather than good.

i note that the care ,welfare,cruelty legislation will remain in place but there are many grey areas between horrible and good .

area/volume per bird is one ,it is possible to give them the minimum size specified in various ways some are better than others ,another is the definition of "free range" which covers pastured from a chookmobile and foraging for a significant portion of their rations through henhouse/pen flocks to living in a shed with a few pop holes to a smallish pen with little reason for them to go out and very little forage.a barn bird might have a rich or poor environment within the current rules etc etc
is an industry standard likely to go for enriched over cost per kilo out of the door?.

standards are usually set as minimums and imho are more likely to be set lower by folk with a high interest in costs and hopefully some interest in welfare beyond will enough live long enough to make a profit whereas standards set by those with a high interest in welfare might incur higher costs per kilo or egg.

standards set by supermarkets are likely to be entirely profit driven but will include "it needs to be able to be presented to the consumer in a way they will buy it" (see my comment on"free range" above).

perhaps another way of looking at it is would i want mr burns writing the safety protocols for my local nuke powerstation?

as rob said being undercut by unethical producers does make the whole exercise pointless as they would get the supply contract unless there was also an import ban on products not produced to the local good standards.

Yep, you risk forcing our producers to follow laws making the standards better but the prices bigger but no laws forcing the cousumer to buy it over the low cost imports.

perhaps the way to go is to get the consumer to chose welfare and quality .

perhaps the daftest thing is that welfare and quality does not have to be expensive it can be that better welfare actually works out to be cheaper as happy critters are more productive and simple stuff like enough space to move about, a bit of sunshine and fresh air make for less mortalities ,less need for expensive supplements/vet medicines etc etc .

even within an industrial model there is scope for zero or positive cost effects from improving welfare.

it might be that thai industrial chicken is cheap to produce compared to uk industrial chicken has quite a lot to do with labour costs rather than welfare standards as both use similar birds ,stocking levels,environmental controls,buy soya feed in a global market and pay for similar chemical inputs,use similar killing routines etc etc but their staff get a tenner a week rather than a tenner an hour.
the welfare component of slightly less stock density, a little environment enrichment and the odd inspection is possibly evened up by the transport costs .

im against industrialisation of any critter based production and dont see much difference between 50000 birds in a dimly lit overcrowded local or foreign shed, in either the job is to keep enough alive and growing to make a profit once they reach a specified size at a minimum cost per kilo.

i do see a big difference between caged and pastured birds and that does have a big cost difference due to the system.if the market demanded very free range high welfare etc etc im sure the thai farmers would be able to do it to high standards cheaper than the uk ones .

perhaps one option is to get their wages up rather than uk ones down as to compete on price on such an uneven field will put uk producers out of the game.

while most consumers are ill educated about most aspects of food they choose by price and marketing, producers and consumers are exploited by the big suppliers etc etc etc ,welfare is low on their list of priorities but to abandon uk welfare standards will not win a price war with those who have much lower labour costs or even slow the globalisation of prole food production.
Rob R

The press and big business are not that far removed. Despite what certain groups may claim even 'cheap' meat is expensive compared to cheap veg, leaving little margin - is it any wonder we're being urged to turn veggie?

Many articles call for less government intereference for a range of 'essential' professions such as teachers, doctors and fire fighters, but they never list farmers among them. I wonder why... Turning the thumb screws on service professions is less accepted than the worthless primary jobs you can export.

it might be that thai industrial chicken is cheap to produce compared to uk industrial chicken has quite a lot to do with labour costs rather than welfare standards...

There is a video going about on the internet showing the inhumanity of industrialised animal agriculture, somewhere like China: chicks being packed by a giant vacuum cleaner, cows being milked on an enormous carousel, stuff like that.
And it does show an almost inhuman level of industrial efficiency, but I don't recall it showing any welfare issues...
Rob R

The big units have their faults but one thing they do have is investment, which is key, more so than cheap labour, I would say.

down under but if the definition of "free range" can be this even with government help what might a bernard mathews (other industrial bird keepers are available) led version be like?

a square metre each and possibly indoors most of the time is not my idea of free range.

They've changed their minds.

current regs could be improved a lot but im glad they have not gone down this road which seemed doomed to reduce welfare basics.
       Downsizer Forum Index -> Livestock and Pets
Page 1 of 1
Home Home Home Home Home