Australians can afford to spend more on food that meets higher animal welfare standards. It’s time to demand change from farmers
It’s easy to argue that the intensification of animal farming puts food on the average Aussie battler’s table at a price they can afford. By suggesting we eat less meat, or better-quality meat, it’s easy to be accused of favouring the rich: perhaps only they can afford the grass-fed, organic, free-range alternative?
So let’s take a look at the numbers. The average Australian spends about 14% of their income on food – down from about 19% of income 30 years ago. According to government statistics, total annual expenditure on meat and seafood was only $650 per person in 2015-16 compared with $734 in 1988-89, allowing for inflation (the data for seafood and meat were compiled into one number, unfortunately). We spend less on meat than we used to, and buy more of it. So now, according to the most recent numbers available, each week households spend an average of $13.70 on vegetables and $9.60 on fresh fruit. Compare that to the $40 or more we spend each week on takeaways, fast food and confectionery. Or the 31% of our food budget we spend eating out, a 50% increase on three decades prior. Or the $13 we spend, on average, per household, per week, on our pets.
Highly contagious virus can live for months in processed meat and would have ‘devastating implications’ if passed to live pigs
African swine fever has been picked up in meat seized by port authorities in Northern Ireland, the first time the ASF virus has been detected in the UK.
Officials confiscated more than 300kg of illegal meat and dairy products from airport passengers’ luggage in June. Samples tested by the Agri-Food and Biosciences Institute in Belfast confirmed traces of the virus, which is highly contagious and can survive for several months in processed meat.
Investigation exposes how Brazil’s huge beef sector continues to threaten health of world’s largest rainforest
The cows grazed under the midday Amazon sun, near a wooden bridge spanning a river. It was an idyllic scene of pastoral quiet, occasionally broken by a motorbike growling on the dirt road that cuts through part of the Lagoa do Triunfo cattle farm to a nearby community.
But this pasture is land that the farm has been forbidden to use for cattle since 2010, when it was embargoed by Brazil’s government environment agency Ibama for illegal deforestation.Nearby were more signs of fresh pasture: short grass, feeding troughs, and salt for cattle.
The EU-Mercosur trade deal is good news for Brazil’s huge beef industry but devastating for the rainforest and environment
European leaders have thrown the Amazon rainforest under a Volkswagen bus in a massive cows-for-cars trade deal with Brazil and three other South American nations.
The EU-Mercosur agreement – the largest in Europe’s history, according to officials – will make it cheaper for Brazilian farmers to export agricultural products, particularly beef, despite growing evidence that cattle ranching is the primary driver of deforestation.
How the strange case of a former president secretly taped by industry executives revealed where power lies in Brazil
In Brazilian financial circles 17 May 2017 is dubbed “Joesley Day”. It’s the date when the power and influence of Brazil’s meat industry was exposed in all its ugly glory and gave the stock market a sucker punch.
It was the date that Joesley Batista, at that point one of the controllers of the world’s biggest meat-packing company, family-run JBS, went to meet then-President Michel Temer, and secretly recorded him endorsing payments to a notoriously corrupt politician imprisoned for political corruption.
Film taken by the charity Animal Equality earlier this year shows the quality of life endured by birds on three farms of one of the UK’s biggest chicken producers. The farms, in Lincolnshire, were holding birds in cramped conditions, with birds found to be lame, struggling to breathe and surrounded by carcasses
Secret filming at three Moy Park farms in Lincolnshire shows birds that are lame, struggling to breathe and surrounded by carcasses
One of the UK’s biggest chicken producers has been keeping chickens in cramped conditions on three farms in Lincolnshire, including in enormous “double-decker” multi-storey buildings, where secretly filmed footage shows chickens that are lame, struggling to breathe and surrounded by dead birds.
From across their sites in Northern Ireland and England, Moy Park supplies 30% of the British poultry market, including Tesco, Ocado and Sainsbury’s. The supermarkets have told the Guardian they they are now investigating their supply chains after the footage was sent to them.