Gristle: From Factory Farms to Food Safety (Thinking Twice About the Meat We Eat)

Gristle: From Factory Farms to Food Safety (Thinking Twice About the Meat We Eat)

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Overview

An information-packed, lively, and informative little guide, Gristle is the first stop for everyone who wants to make informed choices about the food they consume. Multi-platinum musician Moby brings together ten of the country’s leading foodies, policymakers, food-business leaders, and food activists, who lay out how and why the over-consumption of industrially produced meat unnecessarily harms agricultural workers, communities, the environment, and human health—as well as animals.

Contributors include Moby, Brendan Brazier, Lauren Bush, John Mackey, Wayne Pacelle, Gowri Koneswaran and Meredith Niles, Sara Kubersky and Tom O’Hagan, Christine Chavez and Julie Chavez Rodriguez, Paul and Phyllis Willis, Michael Greger, M.D., Frances Moore Lappé and Anna Lappé, and Miyun Park (detaild bios below).

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9781595581914
Publisher: New Press, The
Publication date: 03/30/2010
Pages: 160
Sales rank: 958,603
Product dimensions: 5.20(w) x 7.40(h) x 0.50(d)

About the Author

Moby, one of the world’s most critically acclaimed and commercially successful musicians, has been making music since he was 9 years old. He started out playing classical guitar and then went on to play with seminal Connecticut hardcore punk group The Vatican Commandoes when he was 13 before dj’ing after leaving college and becoming a fixture in the late 80s New York house and hip-hop scenes. Moby released his first single in 1991 (listed as one of Rolling Stone’s best records of all time) and has been making albums ever since. Known for his political and social activism, he has been a vegan for more than fifteen years. Moby lives in New York City.

Miyun Park is the executive director of Global Animal Partnership. Previously she served as Vice President, Farm Animal Welfare, for the Humane Society of the United States and its global affiliate, Humane Society International (www.humanesociety.org). She has helped to bring greater interest in and policy changes for the well-being of animals raised for meat, eggs, and milk into corporate board rooms, international investment banks, multilateral organizations, courthouses, and legislatures. Miyun has spoken on behalf of farm animals throughout the United States and in China, India, Croatia, Korea, Belgium, Egypt, and Italy, and has published dozens of articles and reports on animal agriculture and farm animal welfare, including an essay in Peter Singer’s In Defense of Animals: The Second Wave and a chapter in State of the Animals IV: 2007, co-authored with Dr. Andrea Gavinelli of the European Commission. She is a board member of Global Animal Partnership (www.URLTOCOME.org) and Farm Forward (www.farmforward.com), and serves on the editorial board of the Gateway to Farm Animal Welfare, a web portal created by the Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations. She lives in Washington D.C.

Brendan Brazier, two-time Canadian 50km Ultra Marathon Champion, raced Ironman triathlons professionally for seven years before becoming a bestselling author on performance nutrition (The Thrive Diet, Penguin 2007) and the creator of Vega (http://sequelnaturals.com/vega), an award-winning line of whole food nutritional products. He is one of only a few professional athletes in the world whose diet is 100% plant-based. Named one of the “25 Most Fascinating Vegetarians” by VegNews magazine and one of the “Top 40 under 40” by Natural Food Merchandiser, Brendan has lectured on the role that food plays—in our health and that of the environment—throughout North America (www.brendanbrazier.com). Brendan splits his time between Los Angeles, CA and Vancouver, Canada.

Lauren Bush is the chief executive officer and co-founder of FEED Projects (www.feedprojects.org), a charitable company with the mission of creating good products that help feed the world. Each FEED bag sold provides hungry children with school meals through the United Nations World Food Program (WFP). Lauren has been an Honorary Spokesperson for WFP since 2003, and has traveled to Guatemala, Cambodia, Lesotho, Sri Lanka, Chad, Tanzania, Rwanda, and Honduras to help in the fight against hunger and created the initial FEED 1 bag. As a model, Lauren has carved her own niche in the fashion world and was featured on the cover of various publications such as Vogue, Vanity Fair, Glamour, Tatler, W, and Town and Country. She now resides in New York City, where she works on FEED and other socially conscious and eco-friendly projects, such as a women’s wear line she designed called Lauren Pierce, which utilizes environmentally-friendly and worldly fabrics. She lives in New York, NY.

Christine Chavez once heard her grandfather Cesar Chavez say, “We don’t need perfect political systems. We need perfect participation.” Taking his words to heart, she has come to master the art of modern-day campaigning and community organizing. For eight years, she served as the Political Director of the United Farm Workers Union (www.ufw.org), the organization her grandfather helped co-found in 1962, and during her tenure, was named by Latina Magazine as one of the top Latinas for her longtime involvement with civil rights issues. Today, she works on campaigns to advance progressive causes, putting to use her years of experience with farm workers to level the playing field for issues she believes in. Lauded by such organizations as the Chicana Latina Foundation of San Francisco and the Rhode Island Women’s Fund, and recently profiled in Oprah Magazine for her involvement in the Gen 2 Project, Christine’s work—and her compassion for animals—are based on the values passed down to her from her grandfather: the fight for civil rights, social justice, and labor equality. She lives in Los Angeles, CA.

Michael Greger, M.D., is Director of Public Health and Animal Agriculture at the Humane Society of the United States (www.humanesociety.org). An internationally recognized lecturer, he has presented at the Conference on World Affairs, the National Institutes of Health, and the International Bird Flu Summit, among countless other symposia and institutions, testified before U.S. Congress, and was invited as an expert witness in defense of Oprah Winfrey at the infamous “meat defamation” trial. Among his recent publications are articles in Critical Reviews in Microbiology, International Journal of Food Safety Nutrition and Public Health, American Journal of Preventive Medicine, and Biosecurity and Bioterrorism, exploring the public health implications of industrialized animal agriculture. His latest book, Bird Flu: A Virus of Our Own Hatching, is available full-text at no cost at www.BirdFluBook.org. Dr. Greger is a graduate of the Cornell University School of Agriculture and the Tufts University School of Medicine. He lives in Washington, D.C.

Sara Kubersky, Tom O’Hagan, and their son Leo are native New Yorkers and long-time advocates for reducing suffering. Sara, with her sister Erica, is the co-owner of MooShoes (www.mooshoes.com), a cruelty-free shoe store established in 2001 in Manhattan. Originally located in a defunct butcher shop, MooShoes currently operates in New York City’s Lower East Side and provides increasing numbers of caring consumers from around the world with animal-friendly footwear and information on factory farming practices. Tom, who works in product development for a publishing/information resource company and formerly co-owned Chainsaw Safety Records, an independent label based in Queens, N.Y., has written about music in such outlets as Rumpshaker fanzine and Rockpile magazine, and currently blogs about film, books, and music. Their son Leo, who has been vegan for his entire life, is the embodiment of how healthy an animal product-free diet can be. They all live in New York, NY.

Anna Lappé is a national bestselling author and acclaimed public speaker on food, sustainability and the environment. Named one of Time’s Eco-Who’s Who, Lappé has been featured in The New York Times, Gourmet, and Food & Wine, and appears regularly as an expert commentator on television and radio. From 2004 to 2006, Anna was a Food and Society Policy Fellow with the Kellogg Foundation and serves on the board of directors for Rainforest Action Network. The co-author of Hope’s Edge and Grub, Anna’s third book, Eat the Sky: Food, Farming, and Climate Change will be published by Bloomsbury in 2010. She along with her mother Frances Moore Lappé is a co-founder of the Small Planet Institute (www.smallplanet.org) and Small Planet Fund (www.smallplanetfund.org). She lives in Brooklyn, NY.

Frances Moore Lappé is the author of sixteen books, from Diet for a Small Planet in 1971 to Getting a Grip: Clarity, Creativity, and Courage in a World Gone Mad in 2007. Both were recommended as must-reads for the next president in a 2008 New York Times Book Review feature. She is co-founder of Food First, the Institute for Food and Development Policy; and, with her daughter Anna Lappé, of the Small Planet Institute (www.smallplanet.org) and Small Planet Fund (smallplanet.org). Gourmet magazine chose her as among “25 People Who Changed Food in America,” and in 2008 she was named the James Beard Foundation’s Humanitarian of the Year. In 1987, Frances received the Right Livelihood Award, often called the Alternative Nobel. She along with Anna Lappé is a co-founder of the Small Planet Institute (www.smallplanet.org) and Small Planet Fund (www.smallplanetfund.org). She lives in Boston, MA.

John Mackey is the chief executive officer of Whole Foods Market (www.wholefoodsmarket.com), the nation’s leading purveyor of natural and organic products. Regarded by many as one of North America’s most innovative—and ethical—entrepreneurs, John’s fierce sense of competition, strong belief in free market principles, staunch support for a decentralized and team-based structure, keen understanding of consumer trends, and endless supply of innovative ideas has helped build Whole Foods Market into a powerhouse. Today, more than 280 stores can be found in the United States, Canada, and the United Kingdom, all part of the mission of Whole Foods – Whole People – Whole Planet. He lives in Austin, TX.

Danielle Nierenberg, M.S., serves as a senior researcher at the Worldwatch Institute. Her published work includes Happier Meals: Rethinking the Global Meat Industry (2005) and Global Farm Animal Production and Consumption: Impacting and Mitigating Climate Change (co-author, 2008), which was published in Environmental Health Perspectives, a scientific journal published by the National Institutes of Health. Her knowledge of factory farming and its global spread has been cited widely in the New York Times Magazine, the International Herald Tribune, the Washington Post, and other publications. Danielle worked for two years as a Peace Corps volunteer in the Dominican Republic and currently volunteers at farmers markets. She holds an M.S. in agriculture, food, and environment from Tufts University and a B.A. in environmental policy from Monmouth College. She lives in Africa.

Meredith Niles is the Coordinator of the Cool Foods Campaign (www.coolfoodscampaign.org), a national initiative of the CornerStone Campaign and the Center for Food Safety, a non-profit public interest and environmental advocacy organization that challenges harmful food production technologies and promotes organic and other sustainable alternatives. Under her leadership, the Cool Foods Campaign educates consumers about the environmental impact of food choice on global warming and empowers individuals with the resources to decrease their “FoodPrint.” Meredith writes extensively about agriculture, food, and climate change in a weekly guest column for Grist Environmental News and has contributed to National Public Radio, Environmental News Network and Political Affairs, among other outlets.

Wayne Pacelle is the president and chief executive officer of The Humane Society of the United States (www.humanesociety.org), the nation’s largest animal advocacy organization with 11 million members and constituents, founder of Humane USA, the non-partisan political arm of the animal protection movement, and founder of the Humane Society Legislative Fund, a 501(c)(4) social welfare organization that lobbies for animal welfare legislation and works to elect humane-minded candidates to public office. In 2007, The New York Times reported, “The arrival of Wayne Pacelle as head of the Humane Society in 2004 both turbo-charged the farm animal welfare movement and gave it a sheen of respectability.” In 2008, Supermarket News included Mr. Pacelle on its annual Power 50 list of influential individuals in food marketing, writing that “there’s no denying his growing influence on how animal agriculture is practiced in the United States.” He lives in Washington, D.C.

Julie Chavez Rodriguez is currently the Programs Director for the Cesar E. Chavez Foundation (www.chavezfoundation.org), a nonprofit charitable organization founded in 1993 by Cesar’s family and friends to educate people about his life and work, and to engage all, particularly youth, to carry on his values and timeless vision for a better, more just world. Like her cousin Christine, Julie was born into the farm worker movement and learned at an early age the importance of civil rights and understood well the plight of working people. At the Foundation, Julie spearheads the educational and service programs, namely the Educating the Heart School Program and the Chavez After School Service Clubs. She is a Fellow in the National Service-Learning Emerging Leaders Initiative sponsored by the Kellogg Foundation, the National Service-Learning Partnership, and the National Youth Leadership Council. She co-authored, along with Anthony Welch, the “Martin Luther King, Jr. and Cesar E. Chavez: Legacies of Leadership and Inspiration for Today’s Civic Education Issue Paper,” published by the Education Commission of the States in September 2005. Like her grandfather, Julie believes that “the end of all education should surely be service to others.” She lives in Los Angeles, CA.

Paul and Phyllis Willis have dedicated their lives to promoting—and practicing—more responsible farming practices that not only benefit the welfare of animals and the integrity of the environment, but help sustain our rural communities. Paul is described by Peter Kaminsky in his book Pig Perfect as “among the most influential of a very few who are employing modern business practices in the service of traditional agriculture.” He serves as the Manager of Niman Ranch Pork Company (www.nimanranch.com) and is the owner and operator of the Willis Free Range Pig Farm in Thornton, Iowa. Due to his expertise, he is a member of the committee convened by the National Academy of Sciences to undertake the 21st Century Systems Agriculture Project, which studies the science and policies that influence the adoption of farming practices and management systems designed to reduce the costs and environmental effects of agricultural production. Phyllis, a community activist, has hosted hundreds of guests at their farm for food and conversation, and has worked tirelessly to prevent the expansion and development of industrial factory farms. They both live in Thorton, IA.

Read an Excerpt

CHAPTER 1

Health

Brendan Brazier

Unlike most other fifteen-year-olds in Vancouver, my priorities didn't revolve around football games against high school rivals, dating, or who would win the 1990 Stanley Cup. But, like most kids my age, I was a bit obstinate and a bit reluctant not to question authority.

So, as a serious, young athlete who already knew that I wanted to compete as a professional Ironman triathlete, I found the pro-meat mantra of my coach and trainers a little hard to swallow.

An Ironman triathlon consists of a 3.2-mile swim, a 112-mile bike ride, and a 26.2-mile marathon. I didn't need a coach to tell me that I had a huge amount of training ahead of me. Given how much time I would need to invest in preparing my body for professional competition, I knew that, to get a head start, I needed the most effective training program possible. Since imitation can be the highest form of flattery, I looked at the training programs of some of the top professional Ironman triathletes in the world, with the plan of mimicking their routine. To see what elevated the best from the rest, I also looked at the training regimens of those with respectable, yet average, performance. What I found surprised me: the average athlete's program differed very little from the elite's.

If training discrepancies were minimal and natural talent can only get you so far so fast, what caused some athletes to pull out ahead of the pack?

The most significant difference I found between the upper echelon of elites and the moderately performing athletes had nothing to do with training; it was all about recovery. Breakthrough performances are hinged on the rate at which the body recovers from physical training — which makes sense. Training isn't much more than breaking down muscle tissue, so it stands to reason that the athletes who can restore theirs the quickest will have the advantage by being able to schedule more workouts closer together. Over just a few short months, that extra training will translate into a significant performance gain. Realizing this, recovery became my focus.

As surprised as I was to discover that there were few differences in training routines between the best and the average athlete, I was even more so when I learned that diet has the single greatest impact on recovery: food choices can account for up to 80 percent of the total recovery process. If cleaning up my diet was a principal component to becoming a professional athlete, as I speculated it might be, I needed to learn more. With this newfound appreciation for diet, I decided to take mine more seriously and, for the first time, developed an increasingly growing interest in health and nutrition.

In those early years, I experimented with many different nutritional philosophies, ticking them off as I methodically continued my search for the diet that would give me the results I was looking for. At long last, I tried a purely plant-based diet. Right from the outset, my meat-, egg-, and dairy-free diet was unexpectedly met with extraordinary resistance by friends, coaches, and trainers. They all seemed closed to the possibility that a plant-based diet could support the high physical demands of professional Ironman training and racing, and I found their adamant stance intriguing. They assumed that a diet free of animal products was either too low in protein, iron, and calcium or deficient in vitamin B12 and omega-3 fatty acids.

As only a stubborn teenager can, I set out to prove them wrong — and succeeded. I completed my first triathlon in 1993 as a high school competitor. In 1998, at 23, I began my professional career, going on to place eighth in Ironman Utah and third in the National Long-Course Triathlon Championships, and twice winning the Canadian National 50km Ultra Marathon Championships.

Throughout my research, training, dietary experimentation, and competition, I've benefited enormously on a professional level from adopting a diet free of meat, eggs, and dairy products, while, unknowingly, improving my overall health and protecting myself from the many diet-related diseases and disorders that have become commonplace in North America.

According to estimates published in the prestigious peer-reviewed journal Preventive Medicine, meat consumption accounts for up to two-thirds of the high blood pressure cases in the United States, about one-quarter of the heart disease cases, maybe 40 percent of certain cancer cases, one-third of the diabetes cases, up to three-quarters of all gallbladder operations, most of the food poisoning cases, and half the obesity cases.

Those who eat meat are twice as likely to become hospitalized, twice as likely to have to be on medications, and more likely to need emergency diagnostic procedures and emergency surgery than vegetarians. And, after the numbers are crunched, the health care costs of meat are astronomical, approaching perhaps $60 billion, comparable with the costs of smoking.

Consumption of animal products has not only elevated our risks for myriad disorders, it has jeopardized our ability to readily overcome illnesses that could once be treated effectively. As animal production has become increasingly industrialized over the decades, factory farming has relied more on dosing farmed animals with growth promotants and subtherapeutic antibiotics, which have also taken a toll on human health. In fact, this dangerous practice of feeding medically important antibiotics to factory farmed pigs, chickens, and other animals — not to treat illness, but to speed their growth and try to prevent disease contraction in the overcrowded, unsanitary conditions customary in today's intensive facilities — led the European Union more than a decade ago to ban the nontreatment use of antibiotics of human importance in farmed animal production. In the United States, however, nearly twenty classes of antimicrobials are approved for farmed animal growth promotion, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), including many critically important antibiotics, such as penicillin, tetracycline, and erythromycin. Estimates from the Union of Concerned Scientists reveal that 70 percent of antimicrobials used in the United States are fed to farmed animals for nontherapeutic purposes. Aquatic farmed animals, too, are fed antibiotics. The U.S. fish farming industry consumes a shocking 50,000 pounds of the drugs in a single year.

What does this mean for our health? Antibiotic-resistant bacteria.

It's scary to consider and even scarier to realize it's a reality: indiscriminate use of antibiotics in today's factory farming systems has allowed bacteria to become more resistant to the antibiotics used to treat us when we're ill. Studies have shown that antibiotic-resistant bacteria — and antibiotics themselves — can be found in the air, water, and soil around facilities, as well as on meat, and we can be exposed through infected animal products and water supplies contaminated by farmed animal waste.

The world's leading medical, agricultural, and veterinary authorities — the World Health Organization, the Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations, and the World Organization for Animal Health, respectively — have concluded that animal agribusiness's overuse of antibiotics is, indeed, contributing to human health problems. Add to that the many negative health impacts of diets laden with meat, eggs, and milk (particularly from factory farms), and plant-based diets should look even more attractive, even solely from a personal health perspective.

And nutritionists agree. Vegetarian diets, according to the American Dietetic Association, "are healthful, nutritionally adequate, and provide health benefits in the prevention and treatment of certain diseases. Well-planned vegan and other types of vegetarian diets are appropriate for all stages of the life cycle, including during pregnancy, lactation, infancy, childhood, and adolescence. ... Vegetarians have been reported to have lower body mass indices than nonvegetarians, as well as lower rates of death from ischemic heart disease; vegetarians also show lower blood cholesterol levels; lower blood pressure; and lower rates of hypertension, type 2 diabetes, and prostate and colon cancer."

Whether it's to enhance your athletic performance, to help to reduce your risk of heart disease or your cholesterol, or simply to achieve better health, leaving farmed animals out of your diet is a simple decision with life-long benefits.

Brendan Brazier, two-time Canadian 50km Ultra Marathon Champion, raced Ironman triathlons professionally for seven years before becoming a bestselling author on performance nutrition and the creator of Vega, an award-winning line of whole food nutritional products.

Reported an article in Ecological Economics, "[b]y changing the preferences of people away from meat consumption to more efficient foods like soy, a positive environmental impact can be made worldwide, as well as creating healthier lives and decreasing the impact of health problems on a society."

Dieticians "can encourage eating that is both healthful and conserving of soil, water, and energy by emphasizing plant sources of protein and foods that have been produced with fewer agricultural inputs."

— American Dietetic Association, the world's largest association of food and nutrition professionals

"As an unreconstructed carnivore, I am painfully aware how much land and water go into the raising and slaughter of poultry and livestock compared to growing fruits and vegetables, and I also know how much our meat industries contribute to the destruction of the Chesapeake Bay. Every year I hear from vegetarians about the public environmental and private health benefits of giving up meat, and they're right."

— Senator Jamie Raskin, Maryland State Senator, District 20

Reports the Natural Resources Defense Council, "Factory farms, which mass-produce animals in assembly-line fashion, have harmed aquatic life, human health and ecosystems across the nation. As industrial-sized farms stagger under the vast burden of manure they are generating, environmental disasters are inevitable."

CHAPTER 2

Environment

Lauren Bush

For those of us who live in suburbs or cities, the idea of living near a farm may conjure a warm image of borrowing cups of sugar from the neighbors, who raise animals in healthy, open-air pastures and are good stewards to the land. In stark contrast, as Robert F. Kennedy Jr. said so eloquently — and startlingly — "the vast majority of America's meat and produce are controlled by a handful of ruthless monopolies that house animals in industrial warehouses where they are treated with unspeakable and unnecessary cruelty. These meat factories destroy family farms and rural communities and produce vast amounts of dangerous pollutants that are contaminating America's most treasured landscapes and waterways."

Hardly good neighbors, today's farmed animal factories are devastating the environment as they inflict unacceptable cruelties on those cows, pigs, chickens, and other animals confined in their intensive facilities. Industrial meat, egg, and milk factories often pollute the water, land, and air of the communities in which they are located. One of the primary causes of rampant factory farm pollution? Manure.

estimated annual production of farmed animal manure and human urine and feces (in tons)

Confining so many animals — thousands, tens of thousands, hundreds of thousands, and even more than one million on some factory farms — exclusively or primarily indoors generates an incredible amount of excrement. Unbelievably, some operations produce as much waste as an entire U.S. city. In fact, according to data from the U.S. Department of Agriculture and the Environmental Protection Agency, animal feeding operations — also known as "AFOs," which are defined by the EPA as facilities that "congregate animals, feed, manure and urine, dead animals, and production operations on a small land area" — produce approximately 500 million tons of manure every year, with concentrated animal feeding operations (CAFOs) generating up to 60 percent of this excrement. To put this in perspective, confined farmed animals produce three times the amount of waste that is produced by all humans in the United States, according to EPA estimates.

On traditional, diversified farms — the ones we imagine with red barns and animals pecking and foraging in the grass — farmers make good use of manure, recycling nutrients to replenish the soil and fertilize crops. They balance the number of animals with the land's ability to absorb the nutrients in their manure. In contrast, factory farms intensively confine too many animals who produce too much waste for the neighboring land to utilize.

Farmed animal waste management problems have gotten even more dire over the past two decades, and the USDA's Natural Resources Conservation Service and the EPA have identified the following key reasons:

• the move toward intensive confinement;

• the steady replacement of small- and medium-sized operations with large confinement operations;

• the continued consolidation of all aspects of production;

• the increase in numbers of confined animals per operation; and

• the spatial concentration of operations in high-production areas.

Simply put, the shift from farms to factories is to blame.

Not surprisingly, water quality concerns are most pronounced in areas of intensive crop cultivation (often for farmed animal feed) and concentrated farmed animal production. Overapplication of manure to land, leaking or overflowing manure cesspools (euphemistically referred to as "lagoons"), and the redepositing of airborne pollutants into waterways have contaminated surface and groundwater with factory farm waste.

The incidences of water pollution are many and occur from coast to coast. Just a few examples: In 2003, California's Chino basin spent more than $1 million to remove nitrates, which can cause methemoglobinemia, or "blue baby syndrome," from its drinking water, and the source was found to be in the many local dairies and their abundant quantities of manure. From 1995 to 1998, factory farms were responsible for 1,000 "spills" of liquefied manure or other instances of pollution in ten states. When these cesspools leak, they can poison surface and groundwater, and cause massive fish kills. In one incident, more than 20 million gallons of waste spilled from a manure lagoon on a North Carolina pig factory farm into a nearby river, causing a massive fish kill. In 2005, a manure lagoon at an upstate New York dairy farm burst, polluting the nearby Black River with millions of gallons of manure and killing more than 375,000 fish. In Oklahoma, between 2006 and 2007, the EPA levied more than $7 million in fines against companies — primarily factory farms — in the state. Said an EPA director: "If the waste from those facilities ... [is not] managed properly, you get significant nutrient problems in ground and surface water."

The USDA has found farmed bird production facilities — poultry factory farms — to produce more than half of all of farmed animal waste-generated excess phosphorous and nearly 65 percent of the excess nitrogen. Chicken waste poses its greatest water pollution risk after it has been applied to land.

underwater factory farming

Pathogens have also been proven to be problematic for our water supply. Studies have linked farmed animal waste to pathogenic outbreaks of Campylobacter, Salmonella, Listeria monocytogenes, Helicobacter pylori, and E. coli O157:H7, found in sources of drinking water.

Water isn't the only "natural resource" that is threatened by factory farming. As farmed animal manure decomposes — whether in an intact cesspool or within the animal factory warehouse itself — noxious levels of gases are spewed into the air, jeopardizing the health of workers, neighbors, and the environment. Particulates from factory farms, including hydrogen sulfide, ammonia, methane, and nitrous oxide, are released into the air and, with them, bacteria, gases, and odors. Hydrogen sulfide, which can build up in underground manure pits, has even been deemed a leading cause of sudden death in the workplace. And, of course, the emission of greenhouse gases from the animal agribusiness industry, as discussed in chapter 5, further illustrates the environmental degradation factory farming causes.

Beyond the inhumane conditions factory-farmed animals endure, these intensive confinement facilities — hardly "farms" at all — are truly devastating the environment. Animal agriculture– induced environmental problems have reached such a critical juncture that the Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations insists that they be addressed "with urgency." We must shift to more sustainable methods of agriculture, diversify farms, and reduce the numbers of animals raised and killed for meat, egg, and dairy products, and we must do this now.

(Continues…)


Excerpted from "Gristle"
by .
Copyright © 2010 Moby and Miyun Park.
Excerpted by permission of The New Press.
All rights reserved. No part of this excerpt may be reproduced or reprinted without permission in writing from the publisher.
Excerpts are provided by Dial-A-Book Inc. solely for the personal use of visitors to this web site.

Table of Contents

Contents

Introduction by Moby
1 Health by Brendan Brazier
2 Environment by Lauren Bush
3 Taxpayers by John Mackey
4 Animals by Wayne Pacelle
5 Climate Change by Gowri Koneswaran and Meredith Niles
6 Children’s Health by Sara Kubersky and Tom O’Hagan
7 Workers by Christine Chavez and Julie Chavez Rodriguez
8 Communities by Paul and Phyllis Willis
9 Zoonotic Diseases by Michael Greger, M.D.
10 Global Hunger by Frances Moore Lappé and Anna Lappé
Epilogue by Miyun Park
Resource Guide
About the contributors

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Gristle: From Factory Farms to Food Safety (Thinking Twice About the Meat We Eat) 5 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 3 reviews.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Great for my research essay in class!
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Carries tyler to heat spark result 10
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
While Moby argues in his preface that he is biased, I think this book sheds much light on factory farms and the detrement on our economy, children, and environment. This book taps on the expertise of many subject matter experts such as the CEO of Whole Foods to present information in a clear and concise way. Highly recommend for not just the animal lover, but for those who wish to live a healthier lifestyle and need that extra push over the edge.