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Veg*n Organic Chicken?

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Well what you you think? I know that it's not vegetarian or vegan, but I'm not a vegetarian...I don't want to buy chicken that's unhealthy and unhumane though, so I figured I could post this in this place.

If I posting this in the wrong spot, I'm really sorry!

Anyways, what are your thoughts about organic chicken? Supposedly they live a good life - I for example only eat eggs from a relative with really happy, well-nourished chickens.

Does it depend on the brand, to know how they are treated?

I just hope that they are not handled like the chickens I see on PeTA videos...
 

guineapigluver1

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Since you aren't a vegetarian or vegan, try getting it from a local farmer so you can see how they are treated.
 

Haley0489

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I know this is a bit off topic, but I was thinking of a chicken related question earlier...
A vegetarian who eats fish is pescatarian, but is there a poultry only 'version' of vegetarianism?
 

gpigluver14

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I for example only eat eggs from a relative with really happy, well-nourished chickens.

If you've seen that the chickens are happy, well-nourished, and humanely treated then I say definitely continue to get eggs from s/he, versus eggs you can buy at the store that you have no idea what the treatment of the hens is like.

When it comes to organic meat though... It's a scam. The majority of organic meat animals are treated the same way as commercial ones. And cage-free or free-range just means hundreds or thousands of birds are packed together in a small barn instead of cages.

'Organic’
Meat, poultry, eggs, and dairy products labeled “organic” have been regulated by the USDA since 2002 and must “come from animals [who] are given no antibiotics or growth hormones.” Farms, processors, and distributors must be inspected by the USDA before they are allowed to use the “organic” label. However, only 1 percent of dairy cows and less than 1 percent of chickens are raised in accordance with these standards. One cattle rancher complained, “Organic is a straightjacket with too many constraints.”

The USDA cautions consumers that the “organic” label should not be confused with or likened to “natural” or any other label, and it “makes no claims that organically produced food is safer or more nutritious than conventionally produced food.”

Like the “free-range” label, the “organic” label does not guarantee that animals were treated any better than animals raised in conventional factory farms. An eyewitness revealed that on a so-called organic farm that advertised that its hens were raised in a “natural setting,” the birds were actually crammed “wall to wall—6,800 chickens with one rooster for every hundred hens. They never set foot outside.”

A vegetarian who eats fish is pescatarian, but is there a poultry only 'version' of vegetarianism?

No. Chicken is meat so a there's no class of vegetarianism that still eats poultry. Fish is meat too so IMO, there shouldn't even be pescatarianism. It's hypocritical to say, "I'm a vegetarian but I still eat fish so I'm a pescatarian", as most pescatarians do.
 

guineapigluver1

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You cannot be a vegetarian and eat fish, a lot of people say that fish isn't meat and that may be so, but it's an animal, so you aren't a vegetarian.
 

rxqueen

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There's no way to really be sure if an animal lived a "good" life before it was killed. Or if it was even really organic.

I doubt there is any such thing as a factory farmed animal that lives a good life. And even so, I don't see how having your life brutally ended for someone else to eat is considered part of a good life.


There's a great blog by Gary Francione where he writes about this stuff.

Animal Rights: The Abolitionist Approach » “Happy” Meat/Animal Products: A Step in the Right Direction or “An Easier Access Point Back” to Eating Animals?

Animal Rights: The Abolitionist Approach » The Four Problems of Animal Welfare: In a Nutshell
 

Simonmaal

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This is a discussion that always tends to evoke strong emotions in people.

There are several lines of thought that tend to emerge, both from the minds of extremists at each end of the continuum and those with more moderate views in between:

1) Eating anything with a brain and central nervous system is wrong and all people who do so are mindless brutes.
2) I don't eat meat but those who do eat it are not educated about animal welfare; I myself will educate them.
3) Although I don't eat meat, each to their own, at least I am contributing in my own little way.
4) I eat meat but only from ethical sources; factory farming is cruel in the extreme so it's free range all the way! Eating free range encourages economic growth in that sector and decline in factory farming, as well as boosting the local economy if I buy from local sources.
5) Look, I do care about animal welfare but I can't afford to buy free range. If they lower their prices, then I'll buy it.
6) We are meant to eat meat and those who do not are not educated about the effects on the body resulting from a lack of iron and vitamin B12.
7) Animals are meat and I don't care where they come from; tell it to someone who cares. All vegetarians are weirdy beardy types who need to focus on the real issues in the world.

If I'm honest, I tend to gravitate between 2 and 4. But it is rare i have ever seen anybody's mind changed on this issue, even after been shown the most shocking pictures or statistics.
 

Simonmaal

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There's no way to really be sure if an animal lived a "good" life before it was killed. Or if it was even really organic.

Yes, and this is a major problem, especially if the "organic" animal was reared and killed in a country that has loose regulations on animal welfare and/or trading standards.
 

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Thank you for all the helpful posts! You answered my questions really great!!

Thanks!!
 

Simonmaal

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When it comes to organic meat though... It's a scam. The majority of organic meat animals are treated the same way as commercial ones.

I hear what you're saying but I think it would be fairer to say that it is a potential scam and to make sure you investigate the supply chain as much as you possibly can. Traceability is quite easy in EU countries, but that does not rule out the possibility of fraud.

And cage-free or free-range just means hundreds or thousands of birds are packed together in a small barn instead of cages.
I don't know what classification system is used in the US, but here in the UK the egg marketing regulations specifiy 4 different grades of eggs: organic, free range, barn and cage. The following PDF is essential reading if you buy eggs in the UK:

www.westwiltshire.gov.uk/retail_sale_of_eggs.pdf

You can trace the egg right back to its farm by reading the little producer code stamped on the shell. Most people do not even realise it is there. I caught out a local egg supplier selling caged produced eggs as free range and he is in the process of being investigated for fraud. It sickens me that there are people eating eggs produced from one of the most cruel, wretched and despicable conditions an animal can live in, and believing they are free range.

However, free range is a somewhat loose definition (in both the EU and US) and the law is very vague as to what the term actually means. So if you will buy free range products, then you need to check the supply chain to make sure you do not get misled.

No. Chicken is meat so a there's no class of vegetarianism that still eats poultry. Fish is meat too so IMO, there shouldn't even be pescatarianism. It's hypocritical to say, "I'm a vegetarian but I still eat fish so I'm a pescatarian", as most pescatarians do.
I've never understood that one either! Why are fish singled out for different treatment? :confused:
 

Alusdra

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I don't really get the pescatarian thing, either. You're definitely not a vegetarian if you eat meat. Fish=animal=meat. For people that eat chickens but not other meat, usually that person will say "I don't eat red meat" although, I don't know where pigs fit into that- aren't they technically "white" meat?

One of the rationals behind fish being ok is that it was thought that fish do not experience pain per-se, but rather are simply responding to noxious stimulus as a purely reflexive action. This was also once thought to be true of baby humans, mammals and I think at one point paralyzed mental/comma patients, so I don't know why it's persisted so long as a scientific theory. I suppose no one has challenged it.

Anyway- recent research says that fish *do* experience pain as pain, which has lead to all sorts of discussion in the fish farming industry on how to humanely kill them and still have them edible. In the zoo/aquarium industry discussions are more on best practices so far as post-operative pain meds versus stress of catching the fish in the tank/pain of injection as well as managing chronic, potentially painful conditions and at what point those should be treated/euthanized. (Fish surgery, by the way, is really freaking cool.)
 

Simonmaal

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I think the fish thing has its roots in good old Descartes' assertion that animals are little other than automata, complex machines that are little other than automatic mechanisms. The Cartesian worldview is also a throwback to certain religious assertions on animals being soulless beasts.

Both are preposterous as far as logic and evidence go. If a fish does not feel pain, then we might wonder what on earth its central nervous system is for. We also might question how they can use sensations to navigate through water using their lateral line, which is why their vision is notoriously bad (hence shark attacks against surf boards etc); if they use haptic information (feel) to navigate, then why would that haptic information fizz out at the point where pain begins? It is the most stupid idea ever suggested and is often the copout used when cognitive dissonance kicks in: the pescetarian might think "it is a living creature and I enjoy its taste" but also thinks "it is cruel to eat living things"; this creates a conflict between belief and behaviour that is resolved by referring to this outdated belief in fish as being creatures that do not feel pain (I suspect the mistaken belief in fish memory to be of the same root).

Now I am not ranting against pescetarians, I am ranting against the way that evidence gets distorted to achieve certain political/economic ends. The person who believes that fish feel no pain is a victim of misinformation and deception, in exactly the same way a person who is sold battery eggs as free range eggs. Equally, if a person chooses to be a pescetarian knowing that fish feel pain, then that is their right to make that moral choice.

The bottom line is this: as animal lovers, we have to be on constant guard against the lies spread by commerce.
 
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caviecrazie

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Haley0489:: I don't know how to do quotes but..."but is there a poultry only 'version' of vegetarianism"

Nope. I myself am a lacto-vegetarian - I eat dairy products. There's also ovo-vegetarian - they eat only eggs.
 

Ly&Pigs

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I've been researching veg*nism for awhile now and have found that:

There is vegetarianism which consists of these types:
Lacto-ovo: No meat but eats eggs, dairy and honey
Lacto: No meat but eats dairy and honey
Ovo: No meat but eats eggs and honey
Veganism: No meat, no eggs, no dairy and no honey

Then there are semi-vegetarianism categories.
Semi-vegetarians are those who exlude certain meats but allow the consumption of other meats.
Categories that fall under Semi are:
Pescetarianism: excludes meats but allows fish, shellfish, and crustacea.
Pollotarianism: excludes meats but allows poultry and fowl.
 

rxqueen

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Yes, and this is a major problem, especially if the "organic" animal was reared and killed in a country that has loose regulations on animal welfare and/or trading standards.

Oh man, I could go on forever about how corrupt the USDA is and how loose their guidelines are for being certified organic.

My philosophy for the meat industry in general (and plenty of other food products)? Don't trust the label. Do your research.

And really, if you want to be healthy, if you want reduce suffering-go vegan.
 
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