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Tapping the Eurobarometer: Set Fair for Welfare? - 28/06/2006
 
A Eurobarometer survey on consumer attitudes to farm animal welfare prompts an examination of demands for the products of sustained suffering on an enormous scale unworthy of human wit and intelligence.
Ticks in little boxes don’t make for sound policies for birds in cages, calves in crates, pigs in pens, and animals in farms, units, and lairages in slaughterhouses. A Eurobarometer survey on consumer attitudes to farm animal welfare prompts an examination of demands for the products of sustained suffering on an enormous scale unworthy of human wit and intelligence. A scientific and objective survey finds the welfare and rights groups lacklustre in exemplification and proclamation of their persuasions. Consumers cannot expect governments to plod through legal enactments of kindness and mercy. Societies surfeited and suffering from the self-abuse of excesses of badly distributed food and agronomic bad practice must exercise the self-discipline of “if in doubt, leave it out”. We have the wit and resource to live harmoniously with “our” environment and ever more of its denizens. Education, reform, and replacement are incentives by well-informed consumers whom governments and manufacturers must respect and serve. Well-meaning surveys, such as Eurobarometer, don’t cut the mustard. The welfare of non-human animals demands a better-informed guide than Eurobarometer to inspire a human population stamping too heavily on its environment. We are inspired by Eurobarometer to essay changes of consumer pressure that bid fair to portend a better climate for all species.

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