Quotes from The Food Revolution, by John Robbins

- ‘I was born into ice cream. Well, not literally, but just about. My father, Irv Robbins, founded, and for many years owned and ran what would become the world’s largest ice cream company: Baskin Robbins… My father was grooming me to succeed him. I was his only son, and he expected me to follow in his footsteps. But things did not develop that way. I chose to leave behind the ice cream and the money it represented, in order to take my own rocky road.’ (1)
- ‘I was learning that the same food choices that do so much to prevent disease – that give you the most vitality, the strongest immune system, and the greatest life expectancy – were also the ones that took the least toll on the environment, conserved our precious natural resources, and were the most compassionate toward our fellow creatures.’ (2-3)
- ‘Not that long ago, people who ate food that was healthy, environmentally friendly, and caused no animals to suffer were considered health nuts, while those who ate food that caused disease, took a staggering toll on the resource base, and depended on immense animal suffering were considered normal. But all that is changing.’ (6)
- ‘In the last fifteen years alone, as people in the United States have realized how cruelly veal calves are treated, veal consumption has dropped 62 percent.’ (6)
- ‘When I walked away from Baskin-Robbins and the money it represented, I did so because I knew there was a deeper dream. I did it because I knew that with all the reasons that each of us has to despair and become cynical, there still beats in our common heart our deepest prayers for a better life and a more loving world.’ (7)
- ‘Am I saying that an ice cream cone is going to kill you? Of course not. What I am saying, though, is that ice cream is very high in saturated fat and sugar; and the more saturated fat and sugar you eat, the more likely you are to have a heart attack. This is not a value judgment, and it’s not just my opinion. It is a statistical reality, arrived at by the most comprehensive and conscientious body of medical research in world history.’ (12)
- ‘Many of us, though, will go on eating bacon and eggs for breakfast and hamburgers and milkshakes for lunch, until the day we wind up in the hospital, hurting badly.’ (12)
- ‘When it comes to food choices, habit is stupendously powerful. Our familiar foods give us comfort, reassurance, and a sense of identity. They are there for us when the world may not be… On the other hand, it does take effort to question whether our conventional ways of thinking and acting truly serve us.’ (13)
- ‘Medical research is telling us that vegetarians and vegans (vegetarians who consume no dairy products or eggs) not only have far less heart disease, but also have lower rates of cancer, hypertension, diabetes, gallstones, kidney disease, obesity, and colon disease.’ cited: The Dietitian’s Guide to Vegetarian Diets: Issues and Applications (14)
- ‘The meat and dairy industries in the United States spend literally billions of dollars annually, not only on advertising, but on thousands of other ways by which they influence what you think and how you spend your money. They provide free educational materials to schools.’ (16)
- ‘Today, heart disease is the number one killer of Americans. More people die from heart and blood vessel diseases each year in the United States than from all other causes of death combined.’ cited: American Heart Association (16)
- ‘The correlations between cholesterol levels, saturated fat intake, and heart disease are among the strongest and most consistent in the history or world medical research, from the American Heart Association to the World Health Organization to the National Heart, Lung and Blood Institute, is calling for reductions in saturated fat consumption.’ (16-17)
- ‘Blood cholesterol levels of vegetarians compared to non-vegetarians: 14 percent lower’ cited (19)
- ‘Blood cholesterol levels of vegans (vegetarians who eat no meat, eggs, or dairy products) compared to non-vegetarians: 35 percent lower’ cited (19)
- ‘Risk of death from heart disease for vegetarians compared to non-vegetarians: Half’ cited (19)
- ‘ ‘[It’s a] myth [that] the risk of death from heart disease can be greatly reduced if a person avoids eating a meat centered diet.’ National Cattlemen’s Beef Association [cited]
‘Vegetarians have the best diet; they have the lowest rates of coronary heart disease of any group in the country.’ William Castelli, M.D., Director, Framingham Health Study, the longest-running study of diet and heart disease in world medical history [cited]’ (19)
- ‘Average cholesterol level in the United States: 210 [cited]
Average cholesterol level of U.S. vegetarians: 161 [cited]
Average cholesterol levels of U.S. vegans: 133 [cited]’ (21)
- ‘William Castelli, M.D., Director of the Framingham Health Study, says that when people keep their cholesterol levels below 150, they are virtually assured of never suffering a heart attack. ‘We’ve never had a heart attack in Framingham in 35 years in anyone who had a cholesterol under 150.’ [cited]’ (21)
- ‘ ‘Your genetics are a prime determinant of whether you will get atherosclerosis and heart disease. If your parents and grandparents had it, then you are a candidate; if they didn’t have it, your risk is much lower.’ The Beef-Eaters Guide to Modern Meat [cited]
‘It’s true that a small percentage of patients have a hereditary form of arteriosclerosis in a sense that in their immediate family and their parents’ and grandparents’ families, there is a high incidence of atherosclerosis and coronary heart disease… But that only constitutes about five percent of the cases. Most people (who develop heart disease) don’t really have a hereditary disease.’ Michael Debakey, M.D., Director, Cardiovascular Research Center [cited]’ (21)
- ‘Dr. Peter R. Cheeke is a professor of animal science at Oregon State University and serves on the editorial boards of the Journal of Animal Science and Animal Feed Science and Technology. In this widely used animal science textbook, he says, ‘ Many studies, involving hundreds of thousands of people, have shown… a positive relationship between coronary heart disease and serum (blood) cholesterol. The higher the serum cholesterol, the higher the risk for coronary heart disease. Populations in which the average serum cholesterol level is (low)… are those on the lower end of the per capita meat consumption scale, while those (with high cholesterol levels) are populations with high intakes of animal products… It’s more useful to the livestock industries and animal scientists to come to grips with the demonstrated relationships among saturated fat and cholesterol intakes and coronary heart disease, than to claim that there is no relationship or that there’s some sort of conspiracy against animal products by the medical community.’[cited] ’(22)
- ‘Incidence of high blood pressure in meat eaters compared to vegetarians: Nearly triple [cited]’ (29)
- ‘Incidence of very high blood pressure in meat eaters compared to vegetarians: 13 times higher [cited]’ (29)
- ‘Patients with high blood pressure who achieve substantial improvement by switching to a vegetarian diet: 30-75 percent [cited]’ (29)
- ‘What patients are typically told when prescribed medications for high blood pressure: ‘You’ll probably need to take these for the rest of your life.’ ’ (29)
- ‘Patients with high blood pressure who are able to completely discontinue use of medications after adopting a low-sodium, low-fat, high-fiber vegetarian diet: 58 percent [cited]’ (29)
- ‘The irony is that many of us still think we must eat animal products in order to have balanced diets and be healthy. We still think heart attacks and high blood pressure are regrettable but more or less inevitable byproducts that come with living well and growing old.’ (30)
- ‘Eating healthfully raises your odds of being well. It greatly reduces your risk of many diseases, and it opens the door to experiencing new levels of joy and passion and purpose in your body. But it can not guarantee that you won’t become ill.’ (33)
- ‘In 1997, the American Institute for Cancer Research, in collaboration with its international affiliate, the World Cancer Research Fund, issued a major international report, Food, Nutrition and the Prevention of Cancer: A Global Perspective [cited]. This report analyzed more than 4,500 research studies, and its production involved the participation of more than 120 contributors and peer reviewers, including participants from the World Health Organization, the Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations, the International Agency on Research in Cancer, and the U.S. National Cancer Institute. Since its publication, the report has been hailed by scientists around the world and has helped establish a new foundation for research and education efforts related to cancer prevention. The report finds that 60 to 70 percent of all cancers can be prevented by staying physically active, not smoking, and most important, by following the report’s number one dietary recommendation: ‘Choose predominantly plant-based diets rich in a variety of vegetables and fruits, legumes, and minimally processed starchy staple foods.’ [cited]’ (38)
- ‘The report by the World Cancer Research Fund and the American Institute for Cancer Research concludes its analysis of vegetarian diets and cancer by stating simply, ‘Vegetarian diets decrease the risk of cancer.’ [cited] T. Colin Campbell, the former Senior Science Advisor to the American Institute for Cancer Research, is outspoken on the diet/disease connection. He says, ‘The vast majority of all cancers, cardiovascular diseases, and other forms of degenerative illness can be prevented simply by adopting a plant-based diet.’ ’ (39)
- ‘ ‘The basic reason why heart disease and cancer have become the number one and number two causes of death in the U.S. and other affluent countries is that people are living longer. What has allowed us to live long enough to run these risks? Meat, among other things.’ National Cattlemen’s Association [cited]
‘Now some people scoff at vegetarians, but they have only 40 percent of our cancer rate. They outlive us. On average they outlive other men by about six years now.’ William Castelli [cited]’ (39)
- ‘Vegetarians, of course, eat more fruits and vegetables than meat-eaters. This is one of the reasons vegetarians live longer [cited]. And cancer rates for vegetarians are 25 to 50 percent less than those of the general population – even after controlling for smoking, body mass index, and socioeconomic status [cited]. It was in recognition of this that the American Cancer Society, in 1996, released guidelines calling for a  reduction in meat intake to lower the risks of cancer. The American Meat Institute responded by saying: ‘Guidelines go too far when they begin to dictate food choices [cited].’ ’ (39-40)
- ‘Death rate from breast cancer in the United States: 22.4 (per 100,000)
Death rate from breast cancer in Japan: 6.3 (per 100,000)
Death rate from breast cancer in China: 4.6 (per 100,000)
Primary reasons for difference: People in China and Japan eat more fruits and vegetables and less animal products, weigh less, drink less alcohol, and get more exercise than people in the United States.’ (44)
- ‘I have a good friend, Patrick Reynolds, who is the grandson of R.J. Reynolds of tobacco and aluminum fortune and fame. Patrick’s grandfather died of emphysema and his father died of lung cancer, no doubt from smoking the family product. Patrick upset many in his family when he decided not only to sell all his tobacco stocks, but to speak out in congressional hearings about the dangers of tobacco and to mount an anti-smoking campaign. We’ve done many TV shows together. They call us ‘rebels with a cause.’ Once a, TV anchor asked Patrick whether he felt guilty about the enormous amount of damage his family’s tobacco products had caused to the health of millions. He was quick to respond: ‘No, I throw guilt out the window! I’m here to change things now!’ I’m glad Patrick ‘throws guilt out the window.’ Feeling guilty wouldn’t do a thing to help matters. But taking action, such as he has done, makes a difference.’ (45)
- ‘I have no desire to look down on people who still smoke. I don’t want to make their lives any more difficult. That wouldn’t help a thing. And I have no interest in judging or criticizing people who still eat meat with every meal. No one needs that, no one wants that, no one is helped by that.’ (45)
- ‘ ‘Reported links between diet and cancer have been mostly hypothetical… No single dietary factor, including fat or meat, could possibly account for more than a small fraction of cancer in theU.S.’ – National Cattlemen’s Association [cited]
‘A low-fat plant-based diet would not only lower the heart attack rate about 85 percent, but would lower the cancer rate 60 percent.’ William Castelli [cited]’ (47)
- ‘Most common cancer among American men: Prostate cancer
Risk of prostate cancer for men who consume high amounts of dairy products: 70 percent increase [cited]
Risk of prostate cancer for men who consume soy milk daily: 70 percent reduction [cited]’ (48)
- ‘ ‘[It’s a] myth [that] beef contributes to cancer.’ National Cattlemen’s Beef Association [cited]
‘If you step back and look at the data [on beef and cancer], the optimum amount of red meat you eat should be zero.’ Walter Willet, M.D., Chairman of the Nutrition Department, Harvard School of Public Health, and director of a study of 88,000 American nurses that analyzed the link between diet and colon cancer [cited]’ ’ (49)
- ‘ ‘The associated between cancer and meat-eating are overblown. Genetics are more important than diet.’ The Beef-Eaters Guide to Modern Meat [cited]
‘Five to ten percent of all cancers are caused by inherited genetic mutations. By contrast, 70 to 80 percent have been linked to [diet and other] behavioral factors.’ Karen Emmons, M.d., Dana-Farber Cancer Institute, Boston [cited]’ (51)
- ‘Obesity rate among the general U.S. population: 18 percent [cited]
Obesity rate among vegetarians: 6 percent [cited]
Obesity rate among vegans: 2 percent [cited]
Average weight gain of vegan adults compared to non-vegetarian adults: 10-20 pounds lighter [cited]’ (58)
- ‘Fad diets typically promise a ‘quick fix’ or to ‘melt fat in just two weeks.’ They ignore the reality that sustained health comes from making gradual, long-term, balanced adjustments to diet and overall lifestyle.’ (60)
- ‘The adverse health impacts of excessive meat-eating stem in part from what nutritionists call the ‘great protein fiasco’ – a mistaken belief of many Westerners that they need to consume large quantities of protein. This myth has resulted in Americans and other members of industrial societies ingesting twice as much protein as they need.’ Worldwatch Institute (70)
- ‘You can’t tear flesh by hand, you can’t tear hide by hand. Our anterior teeth are not suited for tearing flesh or hide. We don’t (and Cro-Magnons didn’t) have large canine teeth, and we wouldn’t have been able to deal with food sources that required those large canines.’ Richard Leakey (75)
- ‘Dr. Jane Goodall, whose work with chimpanzees represents the longest continuous field study of any living creature in science history, says chimpanzees often go months without eating any meat whatsoever. Indeed, she says, ‘The total amount of meat consumed by a chimpanzee during a given year will represent only a very small percentage of the overall diet.’ [cited]’ (75)
- ‘Today, the average North American consumes, per day, the rather staggering total of 53 teaspoons of sugar [cited]. This amounts to a five-pound bag of sugar every 10 days for each man, woman, and child. As if such dietary patterns weren’t doing enough harm, U.S. companies and their practices are now rapidly spreading across the globe. Baskin-Robbins, for example, now has more ice cream stores in Tokyo than in Los Angeles. And Mexico has now surpassed the United States as the number one per-capita consumer of Coca-Cola [cited]. The president of Coca-Cola, Donald R. Keough, practically salivates over the Third World as a market opportunity: ‘When I think of Indonesia – a country on the Equator with 180 million people, a median age of 18, and with a Moslem ban on alcohol,’ he says, ‘I feel I know what heaven looks like.’ [cited]’ (83)
- ‘The U.S. meat industry spends a good deal of time suggesting, and sometimes openly stating, that vegetarian and vegan children have poor growth. The reality, however, is that there are typically no problems in the growth and development of vegetarian and vegan children who eat varied with enough calories and adequate intake of vitamin B-12 [cited]. The meat industry spends even more time insinuating that iron deficiency anemia is more common in vegetarian children. But here again, the truth is far from what the industry ads would have you believe. Vegetarian children, in fact, show no greater incidence or iron deficiency anemia than any other children [cited]. One of the meat industry’s most tenaciously held tenets is that children must eat meat in order to have proper brain development. ‘Consuming two or three servings a day from the Meat Group,’ says the National Live Stock and Meat Board, ‘is important…to achieve cognitive function.’ [cited] This is a remarkable statement, especially when compared to the scientific data. According to research published in the Journal of the American Dietetic Associationand elsewhere, the average I.Q. of U.S. children is 99, while the average I.Q. of vegetarian U.S. children is 116 [cited.’ (85)
- ‘Sometimes people say, well, if a vegan diet is a healthful one, and if it’s in keeping with our natural relationship to the Earth, how come vitamin B-12, which is necessary for health, is only found in animal products? It’s a good question, and the answer is simple. Animal products have vitamin B-12 because animals ingest plants and/or drink water that are carrying the microorganisms that produce the vitamin. Vitamin B-12 is constantly being produced throughout the environment by bacteria. If you were living in the wild, as your ancestors did, you’d almost certainly get plenty of B-12 in the water you drank.’ (91)
- ‘I have a friend, an impeccable researcher, who reported on a study that involved 90,000 female nurses and was originally published in the British Medical Journal in 1998. [cited] The nurses entered the study in 1980. By 1994, 861 of the nurses had suffered heart attacks and 394 had died from coronary heart disease. The nurses completed food questionnaires in 1980, 1984, 1986, and 1990. Analysis of the data showed the nurses who consumed 5 ounces or more of nuts per week had a 35 percent lower risk of coronary heart disease and heart attacks than nurses who consumed 1 ounce per month or less. This magnitude of risk reduction was constant regardless of intake of fruits, vegetables, fiber, or dietary fats. It was also found to be independent of smoking, alcohol consumption, exercise, body mass index, and the use of vitamin E and other supplements. My friend, always scrupulously careful not to make claims that aren’t entirely supported by the data, wrote, ‘This study suggests support for the hypothesis that there might be an association between nut consumption and a possible reduction in heart disease risk.’ [cited]’ (93)
- ‘The U.S. Surgeon General’s Report on Nutrition and Health say that two-thirds of U.S. mortality is diet-related.’ (93)
- ‘T. Colin Campbell, the Senior Science Advisor to the American Institute for Cancer Research, agrees. Dr. Campbell is also the director of the most comprehensive health survey in world medical history – the China-Cornell-Oxford Project. The New York Times called his study ‘The ‘Grand Prix’…the most comprehensive large study ever undertaken of the relationship between diet and the risk of developing disease.’ At the study’s conclusion, Campbell wrote, ‘We found a highly significant association between the consumption of even small amounts of animal based foods and the increasing prevalence of heart disease, cancer, and similar diseases.’ [cited]’ (94)
- ‘I believe the time has come to take a stand. There will always be more to learn, and there will always be studies that seem to conflict with each other. We can wait for 100 percent certainty, but people will continue to suffer and die by the millions while we split hairs. We can wait for every detail to be corroborated and every controversy to be resolved but to do so is to abdicate our power to respond to one of the great ethical and social issues of our times.’ (94)
- ‘Amount spent annually by McDonald’s advertising its products: $800 million [cited]
Amount spent annually by the National Cancer Institute promoting fruits and vegetables: $1 million [cited]’ (95)
- ‘Annual medical costs in the United States directly attributable to smoking: $65 billion
Annual medical costs in the United States directly attributable to meat consumption: $60-$120 billion [cited]’ (95)
- ‘The China Health Project, a joint Sino-American undertaking, examined the health effects of changes in the Chinese diet since the economic reform of 1978 and concluded that the recent increases in breast cancer, colorectal cancer, cardiovascular disease and obesity are closely linked to increased meat consumption. Moreover, these disease changes occurred at a level of meat consumption that is only a fraction of the typical American or European intake…Dr. Colin Campbell of Cornell University, who headed the China Health Project, conservatively estimates that excessive meat consumption is responsible for between $60 and $120 billion of health care costs each year in the United States alone. Domestic cash receipts for the meat industry totaled roughly $100 billion in 1997. If Campbell’s estimates are correct, it’s possible that this industry is a net drain on the American economy.’ Worldwatch Institute (96)
- ‘There is no evidence, according to the Food and Drug Adminstration (FDA), that increased calcium intake from ilk will lower the risk of osteoporosis for African Americans [cited].’ (97)
- ‘The FDA has found no evidence that increased calcium intake from milk lowers the risk of osteoporosis for males [cited].’ (98)
- ‘According to the 12-year [Harvard] Nurses’ Health Study, involving 78,000 women, which found no evidence at all that higher intakes of milk reduced osteoporosis or bone fracture incidence. In fact, the study found that the relative risk of hip fracture for women who drink two glasses or more of milk per day was 1.45 times higher than for those who drink one glass or less per week [cited].’ (98)
- ‘None of the girls with low calcium intake had any different bone development than girls with high calcium intake.’ [cited] (98)
- ‘Unlike prescription drug ads, the mustache ads don’t reveal the many unwanted ‘side-effects’ of milk, among them increased risk of prostate and ovarian cancer, diabetes, obesity, and heart disease [cited].’ (99)
- ‘ ‘A low calcium intake in the children of vegans is a cause for major concern.’ Dairy Bureau of Canada [cited]
- ‘Beyond weaning age, children and adults of various countries and food cultures subsist on diets differing markedly in their calcium content. These differences in calcium intake…have not been demonstrated to have any consequences for nutritional health.’ Health Canada’s Nutrition Recommendations [cited]’ (101)
- ‘Elderly people with the highest dairy product consumption actually had double the risk of hip fracture compared to those with the lowest consumption.’ [cited] (103)
- ‘Children with chronic constipation so intractable that it can’t be treated successfully by laxatives, who are cured by switching from cow’s milk to soy milk: 44 percent [cited]’ (107)
- ‘Average American’s estimate when asked what percentage of adults worldwide do not drink milk: 1 percent [cited]
Actual number of adults worldwide who do not drink milk: 65 percent [cited]’ (107)
- ‘I was literally the poster boy for Baskin-Robbins, in that my father put large photographs of me (and of my two Baskin cousins) in all the stores.’ (109)
- ‘My criticism is not with the people who eat an ice cream cone, or a bowl of yogurt, or enjoy some cheese. My criticism is with the dairy industry for putting out ads that are deceptive and untrue, and that trick people, and do so quite intentionally, into believing that dairy products are necessary for a healthy diet. I don’t like to see people misled for commercial purposes.’ (111)
- ‘Have you noticed that the dairy industry bombards us with ads claiming milk products are necessary to prevent osteoporosis, but never makes such claims on milk cartons? Why do you think the claims aren’t on the cartons? Because the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) won’t allow them! The ads are subject only to comparatively law Federal Trade Commission (FTC) regulations, while the cartons are subject to FDA regulations that would require the statements to be backed up with facts.’ (112)
- ‘Ten percent of human body weight is composed of bacteria.’ [cited] (115)
- ‘Many cases of food poisoning are inaccurately called ‘the stomach flu.’ In fact, the stomach flu does not exist. The flu (influenza) is actually a respiratory disease caused by a virus. What are mistakenly labeled stomach flus are usually intestinal diseases caused by food-borne or water-borne bacteria. We can only wonder how many children have suffered cramping, vomiting, and diarrhea without realizing that the so-called stomach fly they were experiencing was caused by the food they’d eaten.’ (116)
- ‘The U.S. meat industry has aggressively fought any legislation that would require factory farms to be tested for bacteria that cause food-borne illness, and has repeatedly opposed regulations that would ensure a safer product.’ (119)
- ‘The chicken carcass is then rinsed and left in a bath of cold water for one hour, so it will become heavier. Research shows this bath is one of the leading causes of fecal contamination and the spread of pathogens. It is also during this step that water weight is added to the bird…The added water weight provides Tyson Foods Inc., one of the nation’s largest poultry companies, with $40 million in extra annual gross profits.’ [cited] (121)
- ‘Another prominent meat executive wrote, ‘It’s a pity book-burning isn’t allowed in this country anymore, because Diet for a New America would be my first choice for such a fate.’ Sometimes people reveal a lot about themselves by how they respond to criticism.’ (121)
- ‘More than 90 percent of U.S. beef cattle today receive hormone implants, and in the larger feedlots the figure is 100 percent. [cited] The U.S. cattlemen repeatedly say such use of hormones is safe. But since 1995, the European Union has completely prohibited treating any farm animal with sex hormones to promote growth, for the reason that these sex hormones are known to cause several human cancers and types of reproductive dysfunction [cited].’ (143)
- ‘Given any kind of a change, [pigs] will never soil their own nests, for they are actually quite clean animals, despite the reputation we have unfairly given them.’ (154)
- ‘Seventy thousand puppies and kittens are born every day in the United States, and only 15,000 of them will ever be adopted as pets. Twenty million cats and dogs are killed each year at U.S.animal shelters.’ (166)
- ‘You see the changes in many places. You see people refusing to buy shampoos or other body care products from companies that test on animals, and instead buying cosmetics and other household products that are made without cruelty. We’re learning to see what we didn’t see before, and then, when we have the courage, creating the changes that make our lives congruent with what we know.’ (167)
- ‘Once you start to notice the surging interest in compassion toward animals, you find it’s everywhere.’ (167)
- ‘Although extreme crowding of animals greatly increases the rates of the animals’ illnesses and deaths, it nevertheless also raises profits. Even when more than 20 percent of pigs and chickens die prematurely in today’s intensive husbandry systems, for instance, producers find their profits increased by such practices. The overcrowding that’s typical today would once have been unthinkable, because animals kept in such conditions would have been decimated by diseases. But now, with antibiotics mixed into every meal, with the widespread use of hormones, drugs, and biocides, enough of the animals can be kept alive so that overcrowding becomes cost-effective.’ (169)
- ‘Layer hens, meanwhile, are crammed together in cages so tiny that they do not have enough space even to begin to lift a single wing.’ (171)
- ‘Pigs are highly sociable and active creatures, who will in a natural setting travel 30 miles a day grazing, rooting, and interacting with their environment. In the evening, groups of pigs will prepare a communal nest from branches and grass, in which they will spend the night together. [cited] In today’s pig factories, however, pregnant sows are isolated and locked in individual narrow metal crates that are barely larger than the pigs’ bodies. Unable to take a single step or turn around, they are restrained in this un-bedded, cement-floor crate for months at a time, subject to what the industry calls ‘full confinement’ virtually all their lives. Some crates are so narrow that the animal is literally boxed in, almost completely immobilized, so that simply standing up or lying down require strenuous effort. Often, the sows are tied to the floor by a short chain or strap around their necks. Thus, these naturally gregarious and active animals are deprived of all social contact and all possibility of natural physical movement. [cited]’ (172-173)
- ‘ ‘Don’t worry about farm animals. Today’s farmer treat their livestock with the same caring concern as ordinary people treat their pets.’ Robert ‘Butch’ Johnson, poultry producer [cited]
‘Agribusiness companies tell us that animals in factory farms are ‘as well cared for as their own pet dog or cat.’ Nothing could be further from the truth. The life of an animal in a factory farm is characterized by acute deprivation, stress, and disease. Hundreds of millions of animals are forced to live in cages or crates just barely larger than their own bodies. While one species may be caged alone without any social contact, another species may be crowded so tightly together that they fall prey to stress-induced cannibalism. Cannibalism is particularly prevalent in the cramped confinement of hogs and laying hens. Unable to groom, stretch their legs, or even turn around, the victims of factory farms exist in a relentless state of distress.’ Humane Farming Association [cited]’ (175)
- ‘In the 1980s, in Sweden, children’s author Astrid Lindgren, who was appalled by the treatment of animals in confinement systems, was leading a campaign that resulted in Swedish legislation that greatly restricts confinement agriculture and mandates that the rearing of animals be suited to the animals’ natures. The law was passed by the Swedish Parliament virtually unopposed in 1987, and produced stunning benefits to public health as well as to animal welfare by greatly reducing the incidence of food-borne disease. By 1995, the editor of the U.S. journal Meat and Poultry was writing that, while there are more than 1 million cases of Salmonella poisoning in the United States annually, in Sweden the number had dropped to a mere 800.’ [cited] (176)
- ‘Although this practice is now illegal in Great Britain and Sweden, and although the European Parliament has urged a complete ban on it throughout the European Economic Community, it continues to be routine procedure in the United States. In fact, 90 percent of U.S. pigs are raised in confinement, their behavioral and psychological needs totally thwarted, their survival in such conditions made possible only by the use of drugs, hormones, mutilations, and antibiotics. McDonald’s and the others in the meat, dairy, and egg industries repeatedly say that they do what they do in order to bring down the price of food. Making the kinds of changes that animal protection advocates would like, they say, would simply be too costly. But Justice Bell concluded that many cruel farming practices could be easily altered at minimal cost. ‘There was no evidence,’ he said,’ that the cost would be increased significantly.’ Today, the very practices that Chief Justice Bell found to be demonstrably cruel – and some that are far more severe – continue unabated in the United States. The reason? For one thing, the Federal Humane Slaughter act requires that all animals (excluding birds) be stunned properly prior to slaughter, but the law carries no penalties and is rarely enforced. For another, 30 U.S. states specifically exempt ‘customary’ or ‘normal’ farming practices from the legal definition of animal cruelty. In other words, if the industry as a whole is doing it, then by definition it can’t be outlawed. According to David Wolfson, ‘In effect, state legislatures have granted agribusiness a legal license to treat farm animals as they wish.’ [cited]’ (179)
- ‘Temple Grandin is McDonald’s livestock  handling consultant, and the author of the American Meat Institute’s Recommended Animal Handling Guidelines for Meat Packers, plus more than 300 articles in both scientific journals and livestock periodicals on animal handling, welfare, and facility design. She also designed the systems in place in the meat plants in which nearly half the cattle in North America are handled. When asked for her input in the discussions underway between McDonald’s and PETA, Dr. Grandin indicated that the corporation could with virtually no effort require suppliers to hire two stunners, thus markedly decreasing the number of animals who are skinned and dismembered while still conscious [cited] – but the company chose not to do so.’ (181)
- ‘[McDonald’s] new guidelines called for chickens to have more space than they did previously (from an average of seven to eight hens per 18-inch-by-20-inch cage to a maximum of five), and for the elimination of ‘forced molting’ (the starving of hens in order to increase egg production). At the same time, McDonald’s called for chickens to be caught by more humane methods prior to slaughter, and started auditing slaughterhouses. And for the first time in history, McDonald’s threatened to cut off suppliers who were not in compliance with humane slaughter guidelines. Applauding these steps, PETA declared a one-year moratorium on the campaign against the company.’ (182)
- ‘Taken from his mother shortly after birth, [the veal calf] is chained at the neck into a tiny stall measuring only 22 inches wide and 58 inches long.’ (183)
- ‘Unable to take a single step, unable even to lie down in this natural sleeping posture, he will remain in this stall for four months until he is slaughtered. In many veal barns, the animals are kept in total darkness except for two short feeding times a day.’ (185)
- ‘Several years ago, the Farm Animals Concern Trust (FACT), an organization trying to improve the lot of today’s veal calves, produced a brochure making the following charges against the veal industry:
‘Veal calves are:
Denied sufficient mother’s milk
Trucked to auctions when only a day or two old
Commingled with sick and dying animals
Sold to veal factories where they are chained for life in individual crates only 22 inches wide
Fed government surplus skim milk
Denied solid food to chew on
Made anemic
Kept in the dark
Plagued by respiratory and intestinal disease
Unable to lie down normally
Deprived of any bedding
Unable to walk at all’
A veal producer got hold of the brochure but didn’t know how to counter the charges it made. So he sent it to the editor of the industry’s journal and requested an effective rebuttal from the industry experts. The editor of The Vealer USA, Charles A. Hirschy, answered, ‘Thank you for the information about FACT. We’ve read the information and regret that we are unable to counter their statements.’ ’ (186)
- ‘Veal calves are made anemic, for example, to keep their flesh pale. Lighter flesh fetches a higher price because people think lighter-colored meats are healthier. Similarly, in order to keep their flesh tender, veal calves are not allowed to take a single step in their four-month lives. Animals that never move develop no muscle tone, causing their muscles to atrophy and producing ‘gourmet’ veal.’ (188)
- ‘The cruelty of veal crates and anemic diets for calves has been widely recognized in the United Kingdom, where these practices have been banned. [cited] They remain, however, standard operating procedure in the veal industry in the United States. While the sale of day-old calves is illegal in Great Britain, and was banned in much of Europe by the end of the 1990s, it is routine in U.S. veal production.’ (188)
- ‘In U.S. egg production, seven or eight hens are typically crammed in each 18-inch-by-20-inch cage (McDonald’s pledged in late 2000 to reduce this to five per cage). This provides individual birds with less space than they need simply to lie down. As far as spreading their wings, forget it. The wingspan of a chicken is about 30 inches. There’d barely be room for a hen to spread her wings if the cage were twice as big, and if she were alone in it. In Germany, the United KingdomSweden, and Switzerland, however, it became illegal in the 1990s to keep chickens in cages. [cited]’ (190)
- ‘More than 99 percent of the hens who lay eggs eaten in the United States are debeaked and kept in cages where the excrement from the birds in the upper tiers collects above them, often falling through onto their heads.’ (191)
- ‘When egg production declines, the hens are often subjected to a process called ‘forced molting’ in which they are starved and denied water. This shocks the hens into losing their feathers. Those that survive start a new laying cycle.
U.S. hens subjected to forced molting in 2000: 75 percent [cited]
Length of time birds subjected to forced molting are given no food (starved): 10-14 days [cited]
Length of time birds subjected to forced molting are given no water: 3 days [cited]
Bird’s body weight lost during forced molting: One-quarter [cited]
As this book goes to press, forced molting continues to be regularly employed in U.S. egg production, even though it has been banned in Great Britain since 1987’ (192-193)
- ‘Naturally, the hens who lay the eggs we eat give birth to males as well as females. But there is very little use for roosters in the egg business. So what do you think happens to the males, immediately after they hatch from their eggs? These little guys can’t grow up to be egg layers, so the industry, having no use for them, simply throws them into garbage bags to suffocate, or hurls them into a giant meat grinder, then feeds them back to chickens or other livestock. More baby male chicks are disposed of in this way in the United States, annually, than there are people in the country. It is standard operating procedure. At least I’ve never heard the industry justify this particular practice as being done ‘for the chicks’ own good.’ ’ (194)
- ‘Most people do eat chicken, of course, and lots of it. In the United States today, the raising of chickens for meat (called ‘broilers’) is a mammoth and growing industry. Eight billion broiler chickens are killed for food in the United States each year, a number larger than the entire human population of the planet. [cited]’
- ‘Broiler chickens that are so obese by the age of 6 weeks that they can no longer walk: 90 percent’ (196)
- ‘Turkeys grow so fast that they find it impossible to mate naturally. They simply cannot get close enough to physically manage. As a result, all 300 million turkeys born annually in the United States are the result of an act of artificial insemination.’ (196)
- ‘Poultry companies use ‘free range’ strictly as a marketing gimmick. Legally, the phrase means nothing. There is no law or regulation defining ‘free range.’…’Natural’ is another meaningless term….By USDA’s standards a Burger King Whopper is natural.’ [cited]’ (197)
- ‘Tyson Foods, the world’s largest poultry producer, brags in its ads that the products are ‘hormone free.’ But ‘hormone free’ labels likewise mean nothing when it comes to chicken meat and eggs. Although hormones are nearly universal in U. S. beef production, no hormones are currently approved for use with poultry.’ (198)
- ‘Because ‘product uniformity’ takes precedence over all else, thousands of pigs that don’t make weight are killed. These animals are picked up by the hind legs and bashed head first into the concrete floor. Some companies call the product ‘thumping.’ Smithfield Farms (the nation’s largest hog producer) calls it ‘PACing’ – the company’s acronym for ‘Pound Against Concrete.’…The dead pigs are delivered to rendering plants, where they are ground up and fed back to live pigs, cattle, and other animals.’ Humane Farming Association (199)
When I visited Poplar Springs Animal Sanctuary in PoolesvilleMaryland, in 2000, I found myself amazed by the friendliness of the zones of pigs who live there. These pigs regularly – and quite happily, I might add – get their tummies tickled by the many children who come by to play with them and to experience pigs in a healthy environment, which Poplar Springs definitely is. But I was told that these very same animals, when they arrived a year before after being rescued from a factory farm, were so terrified of people that any time a human being approached them, they would scream in absolute panic.’ (200)
- ‘When pigs are packed together and don’t have enough space, they become violent, sometimes biting each other’s tails and rumps, and even becoming cannibalistic. The industry’s response is simply to cut off most of the pigs’ tails (a procedure called ‘tail-docking’) and chip off part of the animals’ teeth…In Great Britain, Switzerland, and Sweden, tail-docking of pigs is illegal without anesthetic. [cited] In the United States, however, anesthesia is almost never used.’ (200)
- ‘According to the Wall Street Journal, the total amount of human attention given to the average factory-farmed pig in four months adds up to exactly 12 minutes [cited].’ (202)
- ‘U.S. pigs raised for meat: 90 million [cited]
U.S. pigs raised in total confinement factories where they never see the light of day until being trucked to slaughter: 65 million [cited]
British pigs raised in total confinement factories: None
Reason: The practice is banned by the Pig Husbandry Law of 1991 [cited]
U.S. pigs who have pneumonia at time of slaughter: 70 percent [cited]’ (202)
- ‘I never thought much of it when I saw McDonald’s TV ads in which the clown Ronald McDonald tells kids that hamburgers grow in hamburger patches.’ (205)
- ‘Today, there are 10 million dairy cows in the United States, and half are housed in some type of factory system [cited].’ (206)
- ‘All this stands in dramatic contrast to the situation in Sweden, by the way, where legislation aimed at respecting the rights of animals has granted cows the right to graze in perpetuity [cited]. Dairy cows in the United States today do not have it easy. The natural lifespan for dairy vows is 20 to 25 years. But under modern conditions, these animals are lucky to make it to age four [cited].’ (206)
- ‘Recycled chicken manure, for example, is routinely incorporated into the diets of U.S. chickens. (Is it a coincidence that 90 percent of U.S. chickens are now infected with leucosis – chicken cancer – at the time of slaughter?) By the same token, raw poultry and pig manure are routinely fed to U.S. pigs. And the water they are given is often only the liquid wastes draining from manure pits.’ (208)
- ‘In 1997, in the wake of the British epidemic of Mad Cow disease, the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) finally banned the practice of feeding cow meat and bone meal back to cows. But pigs and chicken are still routinely fed the bones, brains, meat scraps, feathers, and feces of their own species.’ (208)
- ‘Tens of millions of unclaimed cats and dogs are euthanized every year by shelters and veterinarians, who then must dispose of these bodies, many of which are picked up by rendering plants. Much of the livestock feed in the United States today is made with rendered ingredients. Thus commercial meat, dairy, and egg products often come from animals whose diet included the ground-up remains of cats and dogs, including the euthanasia drugs injected into their bodies.’ (209)
- ‘While Wendell Murphy served ten years in North Carolina’s General Assembly, regulatory control of large pig farms was taken from counties and relegated to the state. The state then exempted them from liability for environmental or health damage. Then it decided they needn’t pay gas, sales or property tax, either.’ [cited] (210)
- ‘The Federal Humane Slaughter Act is so full of loopholes that it doesn’t apply to over 90 percent of U.S. animals (including all poultry) destined for human consumption.’ [cited] (211)
- ‘The preferred method of handling a cripple[d pig] is to beat him to death with a lead pipe….If you get a hog in a chute that’s had the shit prodded out of him, and has a heart attack or refuses to move, you take a meat hook and hook it into his bunghole…and a lot of times the meat hook rips out of the bunghole. I’ve seen thighs completely ripped open.’ [cited] (214)
- ‘Number of cows and calves slaughtered every 24 hours in the United States: 90,000 [cited]
Number of chickens slaughtered every minute in the United States: 14,000 [cited]
Food animals (not counting fish and other aquatic creatures) slaughtered per year in the United States: 10 billion’ (214)
- ‘More animals are being subjected to more torturous conditions in the United States today than has ever occurred anywhere in world history.’ (220)
- ‘Some say there’s no need to extend our compassion to animals, because it says in the Bible that we are given dominion over them. But what does dominion really mean? Let’s say you have two sons, and you go out for the evening, and as you do, you say to the elder one, ‘While I’m gone, you’re in charge,’ and you say to the younger one, ‘While I’m gone, you’ve got to do what your older brother says.’ You are giving the older boy dominion over the younger one for the time you’re gone, are you not? But how would you feel if you came home later that night to find that the older boy has subjected the younger one to relentless cruelty? Dominion means stewardship and respect. It means taking care of other beings, not abusing them.’ (226)
- ‘These measures are prudent and helpful, but all of them combined don’t save anywhere near the amount of water you would save by shifting toward a plant-based diet.’ (235)
- ‘Water required to produce 1 pound of California foods, according to Soil and Water specialists, University of California Agricultural Extension, working with livestock farm advisors: [cited]
1 pound of lettuce: 23 gallons
1 pound of tomatoes: 23 gallons
1 pound of potatoes: 24 gallons
1 pound of wheat: 25 gallons
1 pound of carrots: 33 gallons
1 pound of apples: 49 gallons
1 pound of chicken: 815 gallons
1 pound of pork: 1,630 gallons
1 pound of beef:  5,214 gallons’ (236)
- ‘In California today, you may save more water by not eating a pound of beef than you would by not showering for six entire months.’ (237)
- ‘In California, the single biggest consumer of water is not Los Angeles. It’s not the oil and chemicals or defense industries. Nor is it the fields of grapes and tomatoes. It’s irrigated pasture: grass grown in a near-desert climate for cows….The West’s water crisis – and many of its environmental problems as well – can be summed up, implausible as this may seem, in a single word: livestock.’ Marc Reisner, Cadillac Desert (237)
- ‘The amount of water that goes into a 1,000 pound steer would float a (Naval) destroyer.’ Newsweek (240)
- ‘The contamination of the nations’ waterways from [pork] manure run-off is extremely serious. Twenty tons of [pork and other] livestock manure are produced for every household in the country. We have strict laws governing the disposal of human waste, but the regulations are lax, or often nonexistent, for animal waste.’ Union of Concerned Scientists (243)
- ‘The Union of Concerned Scientists tells us that the amount of water pollution generated in producing a pound of meat is a staggering 17 times greater than that generated in producing a pound of pasta.’ [cited] (245)
- ‘Currently, 70 percent of the land in western National Forests and 90 percent of Bureau of Land Management land are grazed by livestock for private profit. Is the public getting a fair deal? In 1994, the U.S. government paid $105 million to manage the publicly owned land used by cattle ranchers for grazing livestock. Yet the U.S. government received only $29 million in revenue from ranchers for use of this land.’ [cited] (249)
- ‘The impact of countless hooves and mouths over the years has done more to alter the type of vegetation and land forms to the West than all the water projects, strip mines, power plants, freeways, and subdivision development combined.’ Philip Fradkin, Audobon (250)
- ‘In 1997, following the advice of public relations and image consultants, the federal government gave a new name to the ADC – ‘Wildlife Services.’ And they came up with a new motto – ‘Living with Wildlife.’ This is an interesting choice of words. What ‘Wildlife Services’ actually does is kill any creature that might compete with or threaten livestock. Its methods include poisoning, trapping, snaring, denning, shooting, and aerial gunning. In ‘denning’ wildlife, government agents pour kerosene into the den and then set it on fire, burning the young alive in their nests.’ (251)
- ‘[Wildlife Services] kills more than 1.5 million wild animals annually. This is done, of course, at public expense, to protect the private financial interests of the cattlemen.’ (251)
- ‘Twenty-five acres of Indonesian rainforest contain as many different tree species as are native to all of North America.’ [cited] (255)
- ‘In 1999, the Union of Concerned Scientists published a book analyzing American society and explaining how things we do in our daily lives affect the environment. Focusing on global warming, the report concluded that the two most damaging things residents of this country do to our climate are drive vehicles that get poor gas mileage and eat beef.’ (267-268)
- ‘Biologists surveyed by the American Museum of Natural History in New York say that we are now in the midst of the sixth of Earth’s great mass extinctions, only this one is the fastest in Earth’s history, even faster than when the dinosaurs died.’ [cited] (269)
- ‘The production of modern meat in factory farms and feedlots has enormous health, humanitarian, and environmental costs. I want all of us to become aware of these costs, but I cannot criticize people who are not aware of them and whose actions follow from what they’ve heard and learned.’ (273)
- ‘At the first world food conference, held in Rome in 1974, U.S. Secretary of State Henry Kissinger promised that by 1984, no man, woman, or child on Earth would go to bed hungry.’ [cited] (283)
- ‘Virtually all of the pigs and poultry in industrial countries now reside in gigantic indoor facilities where their diets include grain and soybean meal. Most cattle spend their last months in feedlots where they gorge on grain and soybeans. Overall, nearly 40 percent of the world’s grain is fed to livestock. And the nations that eat the most dedicate the largest share of their grain to fattening livestock. In the United States, livestock now eat twice as much grain as is consumed by the country’s entire human population.’ (285)
- ‘Remarkably, the world’s nations depend massively on one nation for grain. The United States is responsible for half of the world’s grain exports, shipping grain to more than 100 countries.’ (287)
- ‘The fact is that there is enough food in the world for everyone. But tragically, much of the world’s food and land resources are tied up in producing beef and other livestock – food for the well-off – while millions of children and adults suffer from malnutrition and starvation.’ [cited] (289)
- ‘Children in Bangladesh who are so underfed and underweight that their health is diminished: 56 percent [cited]
Adults in United States who are so overfed and overweight that their health is diminished: 55 percent [cited]’ (290)
- ‘Cattle alive today on Earth: More than 1 billion
Weight of world’s cattle compared to weight of world’s people: Nearly double
Area of Earth’s total land mass used as pasture for cattle and other livestock: One-half [cited]’ (291)
- ‘ ‘Most of the grain fed to cattle,’ say the cattlemen, ‘is feed grain, not food grain.’ [cited] This is true, but there is absolutely no reason why the land, water, energy, and labor that are currently used to grow feed grains could not easily be used to grow food gains.’ (291)
- ‘Human beings who could be fed by the grain and soybeans eaten by U.S. livestock: 1,400,000,000’ (292)
- ‘Beef has become a symbol of the extravagant, resource-consuming American who is destroying the global environment to live a life of luxury, while most of the rest of the world suffer pestilence and famine.’ [cited] (293)
- ‘Grain needed to adequately [sic] feed every one of the people on the entire planet who die of hunger and hunger-caused disease annually: 12 million tons
Amount Americans would have to reduce their beef consumption to save 12 million tons of grain: 10 percent’ (294)
- ‘Restaurant patrons in the eastern United States may have noticed a recent campaign to remove swordfish from menus until the species, stressed now to the point of collapse, has a change to recover. At present, nearly two-thirds of swordfish caught in the north Atlantic today are too young to breed.’ [cited] (295)
- ‘Amount of fish caught per person, worldwide, sold for human consumption in 1996: 16 kilograms [cited]
Amount of marine life that was hauled up with the fish and discarded, per person, in 1996: 200 kilograms [cited]
Amount of world’s fish catch fed to livestock: Half [cited]’ (296)
- ‘In 1985, barely 5 percent of the world’s fish for food was produced by aquaculture. But by 2000, the share produced by fish farms accounted for nearly a third of the world’s total fish consumption. [cited] By then, virtually all the catfish and rainbow trout, half the shrimp, and one-third the salmon eaten in the United States were the product of fish farms. Unfortunately, the product of aquaculture to alleviate pressure on marine ecosystems has thus far proven disappointing. The farming of shrimp, salmon, trout, bass, yellowtail, and other carnivorous species has actually increased demands on marine production in order to provide feed for the farmed fish. It takes 5 pounds of wild ocean fish to produce a single pound of farmed saltwater fish or shrimp. [cited] In 2000, Rosamon Naylor, a senior research scholar at Stanford’s Institute for International Studies, wrote in a cover story in the journal Nature that ‘aquaculture is…a contributing factor to the collapse of fisheries stocks around the world.’ ’ (298)
- ‘Reversing the spread of hunger is one of humanity’s paramount challenges. It will mean overcoming the fatalistic belief that chronic, persistent hunger is inevitable. It will mean reversing the trend toward ever greater concentration of wealth in ever-fewer hands.’ (301)
- ‘Only when none of us fears hunger can any of us truly find peace.’ (302)
- ‘To me it is deeply moving that the same food choices that give us the best chance to eliminate world hunger are those that take the least toll on the environment, contribute the most to our long-term health, are the safest, and are also far and away the most compassionate toward our fellow creatures.’ (302)
- ‘The day that hunger is eradicated from the Earth there will be the greatest spiritual explosion the world has ever known. Humanity cannot imagine the joy that will burst into the world on the day of that great revolution.’ Frederico Garcia Lorca (302)
- ‘The industry has found unceasingly against labeling requirements for genetically engineering foods.’ (306)
- ‘Today almost 80 percent of the world’s genetically modified acreage is planted in crops whose only advantage is their ability to tolerate virtually unlimited applications of particular herbicides. And the other 20-plus percent of the planet’s genetically modified acreage? This land is planted in crops that have been engineered to produce pesticides in every cell of the plants throughout their entire life cycle.’ [cited] (310)
- ‘If genetically engineered plants were designed to reverse world hunger, you would expect them to bring higher yields. But there is no evidence that they do, and in fact increasing evidence that they do just the opposite.’ [cited] (316)
- ‘Herbicide resistance can often by conferred by altering a single enzyme or pathway, whereas yield involves hundreds or thousands of genes, interacting among themselves and the environment. [cited] It is possible that, given enough time, genetic engineering could be successfully used to increase nature’s bounty. Thus far, though, this hasn’t happened. And Dr. Vandana Shiva, one of the world’s foremost experts on world hunger and transgenic crops, is not convinced that it ever will. She rejects the claims that biotechnology will help feed the world. The argument, she says, ‘is on every level a deception.’ ’ (317)
- ‘To date, no insurance company has been willing to insure the biotech industry.’ (324)
- ‘ ‘Those of us in industry can take comfort….After all, we’re the technical experts. We know we’re right. The ‘antis’ obviously don’t understand the science and are just as obviously pushing a hidden agenda – probably to destroy capitalism.’ Bob Shapiro, Montano’s CEO [cited]
‘(Genetic engineering) faces our society with problems unprecedented, not only in the history of science, but f life on the Earth. It places in human hands the capacity to redesign living organisms, the products of some three billion years of evolution….Up to now, living organisms have evolved very slowly, and new forms have had plenty of time to settle in. Now whole proteins will be transposed overnight into wholly new associations, with consequences no one can foretell….Going ahead in this direction may not be only unwise, but dangerous. Potentially, it could breed new animal and plant diseases, new sources of cancer, and novel epidemics.’ George Wald, M.D., Nobel Laureate in Medicine, Professor of Biology, Harvard University’ (331)
- ‘Since 1950 U.S. dairy farmers have been producing vastly more milk than Americans can consume. In fact, in 1986-1987, the federal government paid farmers to kill their cows and stop dairy farming for five years, in an effort to reduce the amount of milk produced. More than 1.5 million U.S. milk cows were slaughtered. Even this drastic program, however, did not solve the problem of milk overproduction in the United States.’ (335)
- ‘Since half the soybeans grown in the United States are now Monsanto’s Roundup Ready variety, and because soy is contained in such a wide array of processed foods, tens of millions of people are unknowingly eating these experimental foods daily.’ (336)
- ‘There are now laws in the United Kingdom requiring the labeling of genetically modified foods, and almost every major food chain in the country has pledged to be ‘gene-free.’ ’ (337)
- ‘Polls have consistently found that 80 to 95 percent of the American public wants genetically engineered foods to be labeled.’ [cited] (343)
- ‘Since the advent of genetic engineering, scientists have warned of the risk that crops that were engineered to be resistant to herbicides would leak the genes that provide the resistance into the very weeds those herbicides are intended to kill. Until recently, however, we did not know when this might occur. In fact, it has happened sooner than almost anyone imagined. In 1998, only two years after the commercialization of transgenic crops, Canadian farmers reported that weeds had indeed acquired the ability to tolerate herbicides, frustrating weed control efforts and confirming fears of genetic pollution. Herbicide-resistant genes had been transferred to weeds in the environment of the genetically modified crops, producing fertile superweeds that were resistant to the herbicide.’ (350)
- ‘Now, even as we assault our farmland with millions of pounds of poisons annually, bugs are eating as large a share of the world’s food crops as they did in medieval times.’ [cited] (353)
- ‘Many studies have found yields from organic production to be comparable to conventional systems, especially over the long term.’ (371)
- ‘In 1995, the Rodale Institute completed the first 14 years of extensive trials comparing organic versus chemical farming of corn. ‘Our results,’ the Institute said, ‘from the first 14 years show that comparable yields can be obtained without the use of chemical pesticides or fertilizers.’ ’ (372)
- ‘Your life does matter. It always matters whether you reach out in friendship or lash out in anger. It always matters whether you live with compassion and awareness or whether you succumb to distractions and trivia.’ (385)


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