Anyone who’s seen Food, Inc. or one of the many other documentaries about how horribly we treat our meat before it stops breathing knows something about chicken farms. They’re horribly stressful for the birds, not to mention unsanitary and just plain cruel. As a response to this, The Royal College of Art’s Architecture Department puts forth the following concept.
Warning: the concept is unsettling at first blush, and still unsettling afterward. Push past it and read the article. It’s really interesting, and I’ll put my thoughts after the break.
Here’s the link: Farming the Unconscious
I’m waiting for the day when we produce all our meat in the lab and can re-purpose the millions of acres used on sustaining livestock into growing produce, but while there is some promising research out there, I don’t see that day coming for at least 25 years, probably more. In the meanwhile, I think it’s worth it to take a look at the way we get our chicken nuggets and bacon strips through a more modern lens. The method proposed above gives me the willies, but when I think about it objectively, we’re not raising the animals for any reason besides meat, and we’re making them suffer. We won’t stop raising, but if this (or something like it) is a feasible method, why not stop keeping them in pain? Who knows? The lack of stress might even make the meat taste better. It seems to work for Kobe beef.