Wednesday, January 14, 2009

The Animal Welfare Approved label on the outside means grateful meat on the inside

These bags of ground-up flesh may look similar to bags of ground-up flesh from those big, greedy factory farms.  But they couldn't be more different.  See that blue and green label?  That's the Animal Welfare Approved label.  It means back when that ground-up flesh was still a living, breathing animal, it was treated with dignity and compassion.   "Animal Welfare Approved is not just a list of rules.  It's a philosophy of respect." This philosophy of respect might not be immediately apparent when you look at the bags of ground-up flesh sitting on the conveyor belt, but that's what the label is for.  The label tells us that though it may appear we're looking at the result of a painful and terrifying slaughter, we have to see beyond mere appearances.  The former animals whose remains now fill these bags were raised by family farmers who put "each individual animal's comfort and well-being first."  For instance, suppose that first bag contains the ground-up flesh of what was once a living duck.  We need to understand that the duck was permitted to enjoy clean, bountiful water before it was stunned electrically, had its throat cut, was bled then scalded to facilitate removal of its large feathers and dipped in paraffin wax to remove its pin feathers.  Mind you, every step of this process was done with a philosophy of respect or it never would have earned the Animal Welfare Approved label.  So next time you're in the meat section of your local grocery store and you can't seem to tell the difference between meat prepared with care and respect for compassionate eaters and meat brutally slaughtered with avarice and cruelty in factory farms, fit only to be consumed by uncaring gluttons, then look for the Animal Welfare Approved label.