DawnWatch: NY Times editorial condemns pig industry consolidation — 9/23/06

September 29th, 2006 4:36 pm by Kelly Garbato

———- Forwarded message ———-
From: DawnWatch – news [at] dawnwatch.com
Date: Sep 25, 2006 8:11 PM
Subject: DawnWatch: NY Times editorial condemns pig industry consolidation 9/23/06

The Saturday, September 23, New York Times, included an editorial (the paper’s official editorial opinion) headed “The Ultimate Agricultural Efficiency.”

It opens:

“Any American history of pork — the meat, that is — shows a steady concentration of more and more hogs in the hands of fewer and fewer producers. That is what modern agricultural “efficiency” looks like. It’s good for the bottom line of the big industrial players, but bad for farmers, hogs, the environment and, ultimately, consumers. That history took another step in the wrong direction when Smithfield Foods — the biggest pork packer — agreed to buy the second biggest pork packer, Premium Standard Farms.”

The piece explains that as pig farming operations are increasingly consolidated, small farms are dying out, and pig farmers are becoming “janitors in confinement barns across rural America where the packers’ huge herds of pigs are crammed in stalls to live out their short lives.”

The reference to pigs being crammed into stalls points to the cruelty of factory farming, but the piece doesn’t focus on it, which is why letters to the editor can help. Since it was photographs of pigs living in individual in stalls so small that they cannot even turn around that first piqued my interest in animal rights, I urge anybody who has not seen those photos to check out the photo gallery at http://www.FactoryFarming.com .

You can read Saturday’s New York Times editorial on line at http://www.nytimes.com/2006/09/23/opinion/23sat3.html.

You can send a letter to the editor describing the cruelty of modern farming or singing the praises of Fakin Bacon. (Not literally — in your own words please.)

The Times takes letters at letters [at] nytimes.com

Always include your full name, address, and daytime phone number when sending a letter to the editor. Shorter letters are more likely to be published.

Yours and the animals’,
Karen Dawn

(DawnWatch is an animal advocacy media watch that looks at animal issues in the media and facilitates one-click responses to the relevant media outlets. You can learn more about it, and sign up for alerts at http://www.DawnWatch.com. To unsubscribe, go to http://www.dawnwatch.com/cgi-bin/dada/dawnwatch_unsubscribe.cgi
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