The federal, provincial, and territorial ministers of agriculture have just released the Calgary Statement, which outlines priorities for the next wave of agriculture policy. The government is now seeking feedback on these priority areas until November 30, 2016.
Please fill in the short questionnaire and make three main points:
One, that the government needs to regulate animal agriculture–many people are shocked to learn there are no on-farm animal welfare standards to protect upwards of 750 million animals killed for food each year. The industry’s own unenforced codes of practice are inadequate, and no substitute for independent oversight. The government is concerned with maintaining public trust in our food system; even standard industry practices are unacceptable to most people, and public trust in both the government and the sector will continue to erode are these cruel practices continue to be exposed.
Two, that farming animals is an environmental disaster. Animal agriculture accounts for at least 14.5 percent of global greenhouse gas emissions. Research shows it’s unlikely global temperature rises can be kept below two degrees Celsius without a shift in global meat and dairy consumption. (Two degrees Celsius is considered by climate scientists to be the crucial tipping point to avoid irreversible global disaster.) What’s more, governments–including our own–have been negligent in giving this issue the attention it needs. The government needs to shift research and support away from animal farming and towards plant-based farming and innovation.
Three, that plant-based food innovation is poised to be a major economic force, with investors like Bill Gates and Li Ka-shing recognizing its importance for sustainable, healthy, and humane food systems. Canada already boasts many groundbreaking plant-based innovators like Gardein and Daiya, and should do more to support such promising new companies. Instead of subsidizing cruel and unsustainable animal agriculture, the government should subsidize plant-based foods.
Thank you for speaking up for animals. They desperately need our voices.