We are a nation of imitation. Laminate wood floors, polyester and generic brands. We have come to expect – and even praise – the development of imitation clothing, household goods and vehicles. We have no problem settling for close or kind-of-the-same thing.
The same goes for agriculture. Roof-top gardens are now referred to as farms and agriculture industry analysts are synonymous with farmers. We all can’t raise livestock so we assume that anyone that has saddled a horse is a rancher.
Earlier this week, Burger King announced it was transitioning to cage-free eggs and pork. The restaurant chain – which ironically lost it’s No. 2 fast food chain status to Wendy’s earlier this month – claimed the decision was an ethical one made to improve the living conditions of millions of hens and pigs.
But Burger King – like a lot of us – settled for the imitation agriculture organization. Instead of speaking with farmer about the living conditions of animals and learning why hens are kept indoors instead of being allowed to roam free, they turned to a faux agriculture group that has no idea why farmers use certain practices. They only know what’s trendy and what’s popular and right now that’s cage-free.
Farmers and ranchers put practices in place for a reason. We strive to run the most efficient, safe and productive farms as possible as we struggle to feed an ever-growing population. If cages weren’t best for our animals’ health and well-being we wouldn’t use them. The Humane Society of the United States (HSUS) which backed Burger King’s move, has no farming or ranching experience. The multi-million dollar organization is made up of attorneys and corporate big-wigs that like to act like farmers but have no idea what goes into producing the protein sources our country demands. They claim to help local animal shelters but only a small fraction of their budget goes to helping household pets escape abuse and neglect. They are the epitome of faux animal advocates.
There’s a reason Coke is still around, because sometimes the real thing really is the best. Talk to a farmer, not a million-dollar corporation that has no connection to the land or animals