Each life is sacred – Posted in: Uncategorized
When we think of calves we often picture the traditional idyllic meadowland scene of pastoral beauty. Solid leafy trees, verdant grass swaying with the breeze and a cow with her calf strolling peacefully together, stopping occasionally to graze.
Here in the west, the reality for most calves is birth, followed by a noisy, packed ride in the back of a truck with a slaughter-house at the end of the journey. For some their lives are a little longer. No strolls in green fields though. No gentle nuzzling from mother. They are penned into a small crate. They can just stand up, barely able to move. The idea is that if their muscles/meat are unused, then the flesh/meat will be tender. Clever no?
Renamed “veal” so that meat consumers don’t have to consider that they’re eating calves, they also have a journey to a slaughter-house after their months of captivity. Sometimes the journey is hundreds of miles from Britain to Europe. The terror and discomfort must be unimaginable.
Often seen as a mere by-product of the milk industry, their welfare is hardly contemplated and their fate seemingly decided. Thankfully some groups are doing their best to change much of this. We are one. Another would be: http://www.ciwf.org.uk.what-we-do/calves/take-action/default.aspx
Just because this has gone on for decades here in the west, does not mean that change is impossible. Let’s all “take-action” and perhaps one day all calves will be born to lead happy, productive lives. (Here’s Gaitama, one of our lucky, happy calves.)
Adrian van Steijn August 02, 2011 - 12:35
I have heard that you do take the calves away from their mother after some days — if this is true then the milk you are selling is NOT A-himsa! The milk can ONLY be Ahimsa if the calves can continually drink from their mother.
A. van Steijn, Netherlands
Sue August 21, 2011 - 08:50 – In reply to: Adrian van Steijn
Dear Mr van Steijn:
Thank you for your comment.
For your information, our calves are not taken from the mothers for a period of weeks. After that they live in a nursery group, but go back to their mothers twice a day at milking times. This is pleasurable for babies and mothers.
Our first and number one goal was to create a sustainable slaughter-free hers. We have accomplishes that goal. Our next goals are around providing as stimulating and healthy environment as possible for the herd.
We thank everyone for supporting us in this endeavour. One step at a time we will have a model for a true Ahimsa herd.
Sue August 22, 2011 - 18:56 – In reply to: Adrian van Steijn
Dear Mr van Steijn:
Please see my reply above. Thank you for your comment and your interest in Ahimsa slaughter-free milk.
Together we hope to see sustainable slaughter-free herds thriving around the globe.