Paul McCartney set up a veggie-burger chain in Linda's memory
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Sue Cross's Huffington Post blogs
23 March 2013
23 March 2013
Today's Freaks goes behind the scenes of animal farming. It shows for instance that in some parts of the world breeding dogs for meat is preferred to breeding pigs. And that in factory farms, if it were not for the routine use of antibiotics, animals would be unlikely to stay alive until their slaughter date - see Antibiotics, Diet and also Disease; or go to Health. Under Supermarket Food find that ingredients that originate from animals are in all sorts of products you might not expect – like gelatine in sweets (which is made by boiling animal skins and bones until the mixture becomes soft and elastic). This book also looks at all sorts of topics not normally associated with food production, like: Fear, Injuries, Pain. Bullying, Cannibalism, Mutilations. Hunger, Gassing, Electrocution.
There are Questions too – for example: Is it wrong to treat farm animals as if they were inanimate agricultural products? And if so what can we do about it? Above all this book shows how animals reared in factory farms have been bred to become so unlike their natural selves (see Double-muscled Mutants) that they are unlikely - even in natural surroundings - to be able to lead anything like normal lives. Hence the title of this book – Today's Freaks.
Today's Freaks: An A to Z of How Farm Animals Live and Die
is available from Amazon ebooks at $US 1.00 /€0.86 /£0.86
In her new book On the Menu: Animal Welfare Sue Cross examines how the animals we eat are bred, reared, fed and slaughtered: the chickens, ducks, turkeys and geese; the laying hens, quail and pheasants reared for sport; the pigs, lambs, dairy cattle, beef cattle, veal calves, fish and shellfish.
How do these animals feel? How intelligent are they? And can they suffer?
On the Menu shows how all the animals farmed and processed for our food are individuals. Like our pets they too have feelings and like them they feel pain and fear. Yet in the most intensive conditions there is nowhere they can find safety and comfort. Crammed into vast sheds they suffer both physically and mentally as they are turned into - and treated as - agricultural products.
There is no other book like this on the market and to read it is to change forever the way we think about the food we eat.
On the Menu: Animal Welfare is available in the UK at £ 8.99;
in the USA at US$13.99 13.99 via several suppliers including Amazon; the distributor is Ingrams;
in New Zealand at NZ$29.95 via Fishpond;
and in Australia at AU$23.50 via Booktopia
On the Menu is on loan from public libraries in the UK and the Republic of Ireland.
also from Pen Press at a 35% discount (larger for bulk orders) on a sale or return basis, contact: firstname.lastname@example.org 0845 108 0530
"Like most vegans, I often find myself in conversation with people about what I eat and the reasons for my choices, so I try to arm myself with knowledge to be as effective a voice as I can be for all animals currently suffering on factory farms.
"This book is a comprehensive review of the animal welfare problems caused by factory farming and considers the alternative systems such as free range and organic. It is a complex subject but Sue Cross's extensive research and clear, factual writing style puts the message across. 'On the Menu' deserves to be widely read and is a valuable addition to the campaign to raise awareness about how we treat farmed animals."
"Factory farming imprisons billions of animals behind closed doors. This book throws open those doors and invites us to view the misery and suffering inside. I hope thousands of us are brave enough to read "On the Menu" and to take the challenge of doing something to bring an end to this horrendous corruption of what real farming should be about."
“I think this book is a 'must read' for anyone who eats dairy, fish or meat, or who shops in a supermarket. My husband, who farms organically, couldn't put it down and said it ought to be compulsory reading for anyone who works with stock.”
“I have been reading your typescript with a sort of appalled fascination. I suppose this is what people felt when they first read Silent Spring or Animal Machines.”
“This is a book that everyone should read, whatever their beliefs about the rights and wrongs of eating animals. I agree with the final sentence on the back page of the book "Essential reading for everyone with an interest in the origin of the food they eat and I thoroughly recommend it.”
“I wonder how many of us would tuck into our food with such gusto if we really knew its origin and the suffering it may have entailed? This excellent book takes us through the nastier side of rearing animals for food and I commend it to both animal lovers and cynics alike.”
“On the Menu takes a thorough look at the treatment of animals kept and killed for food. Its approach is methodical and style matter of fact – and this, somehow, makes the book all the more alarming, fascinating and shocking. It is a compulsive read. Sue Cross has poured through a multitude of hard-going agricultural reports and has brought us the main conclusions in an easy to understand, absorbing book. It should be read by anyone who eats!”
“Whether it be the injuries to a fish slowly crushed in the cod end of a trawl, the deprivations faced by a crated farrowing sow, the debeaked incarceration of a battery hen or the near constant state of pregnancy of a high-yield dairy cow, in 'On the Menu : Animal Welfare' Sue Cross carries out an unemotional analysis of the food production industry.
Using a clear, easy-to-understand style, her reader is compelled to draw the conclusion that the established sentience of animals necessitates a thorough review of food animal industry permitted practices. The weight of evidence presented verifies the urgent need for major overhaul which must be passed in to EU Law at the earliest opportunity.”
“By leaving out emotion and simply concentrating on the facts, Sue has cleverly created a far more passionate read in which the issues of welfare, pain and stress in intensively farmed animals are the underlying messages which can’t be ignored. However much we think we know about the kinds of conditions in which these animals are invariably kept, vegetarians and carnivores alike will learn a great deal more than they imagined possible. Almost every page is full of facts and informative statistics. It is concentrated and powerful writing.”
"This book clearly highlights the discrepancies in the UK between the disposable way farm animals are treated and the more compassionate way most people deal with other animals. Animals reared for food are as sentient as the more recognisably ‘cuddly’ animals yet they are often treated effectively as components in a machine. WSPA recognises that our behaviour towards farm animals needs to change to be ethical and environmentally sustainable."
"Chapters categorise the animals used for food, firstly by food classification and secondly by individual species. Each section features case studies from the world's leading experts on animal welfare (including Viva!), which Cross uses to expose and challenge current welfare criteria across both industrial (factory farming) and organic/free-range methods of food production. This book is a must-read and will forever change the way you order from your menu. Tofu 'cheesecake' anyone?"
"This thorough book looks at virtually all the kinds of animals that humans eat – which includes just about every nonhuman creature on earth – and discusses the nature of those animals. From insects to farmed mammals, Cross explores the anatomy, physiology, and social make-up of a wide range of animals. In particular, she provides evidence for their ability to feel pain and suffer. Further, Cross shows that the way animals are raised for food cause in modern factory farms is particularly miserable for many creatures. This book provides readers with factual information that can counter claims that capturing, growing, and killing animals – particularly “lower” animals such as crustaceans – raises no serious moral issues."