I loved cheese. I didn’t care what kind or how it was prepared. But that all changed the day I found out about dairy farming. Here’s what I learned.
While it may seem obvious, many people don’t realize that cows must be pregnant or have just given birth to produce milk. To this end, cows at dairy farms are forcibly impregnated. This procedure is highly invasive, requiring farmers to stick nearly their entire arms into the cows’ rectums. This is repeated about every 12 months.
After carrying their babies for nine months—just like humans—mother cows give birth. This is when the real tragedy begins. Within hours of giving birth, these mothers have their babies ripped away from them. Why? Because farmers want the milk these cows produce to be sold for profit rather than fed to calves.
This inherently cruel practice is performed on every dairy farm.
The forced separation causes many mother cows to bellow for hours or days, often anxiously pacing or searching for their stolen babies. One can only imagine the stress and despair a mother must feel not knowing where her baby is.
In 2013 locals in Newbury, Massachusetts, called the police because of the crying they heard from a nearby dairy farm. Upon investigation, authorities discovered that the cries had come from mourning cows whose newborns had been stolen from them.
In addition to inflicting emotional trauma, the cycle of impregnation, birth, and intensive milking takes a physical toll on these cows. While a cow's natural lifespan is up to 25 years, cows at dairy factory farms live only about four years. Once they are considered “spent,” they are sent off for slaughter, their bodies typically used for ground beef.
A 2014 Mercy For Animals undercover investigation at Andrus Dairy, a supplier to one of the largest cheese producers in the country, revealed extreme animal abuse and neglect. Workers were caught on video viciously punching, kicking, and beating cows.
See for yourself.
The cruelty that goes into each and every drop of milk is why I will never consume dairy again.
Upset by the truth? Boycott this cruel industry by ditching dairy once and for all. Click here to get started!