As a family we don’t eat a lot of meat, but when we do we try and eat organic. Although there are many many ethical and environmental reasons to make this choice, for us the basis of our choice is mostly for health reasons.
One of the most important reasons is that organic meat is antibiotic-free. One of the problems that arises from factory farming, with high density confinement of the animals, is infection. To minimize infection in mass produced meat, antibiotics are added to the feed. Unfortunately, an inevitable consequence is the development of drug resistant bacteria and outbreaks of ‘SARS’ like infections. The mass produced meat we eat often becomes contaminated with these “superbugs” like staph A, salmonella, and e. coli. The ingestion of antibiotics in the meat more often than not leads to us becoming antibiotic resistant as well.
Another reason we choose organic meat is that no chemical pesticides are used in raising the animals. On factory farms that mass produce, they use pesticides to control the growth of pests that are harmful to the animals. These pose a health risk to us, as they can accumulate in the animals and are ingested by us. The known side effects of pesticides are asthma, birth defects, hormone imbalances leading to such things as endometriosis, fertility problems and reduced sperm count. Pesticides are also known neurotoxins, which lead to dizziness, lightheadedness, effects on learning and potential longterm brain damage.
Growth promoter hormones are also given with factory farmed animals. Typically beef cattle, sheep, goats and dairy cows are all given growth hormone so that they gain weight faster to produce meat for consumption at a faster rate, and to dairy cows to increase the production of milk. The concern for our health in ingesting meat with these hormones creates an increase in breast cancer, prostate cancer, and as well leads to early puberty changes in girls which is lined with a higher rate of breast cancer later in life.
Another plus to eating organic meat is the taste. Because the animals are raised grazing free range with room to move and feed, the animals grow the way nature intended, rather than boxed up, confined with little or no space between them, and fed on an unatural diet of corn for fast weight gain.
Food, Inc. (Film), Fresh The Movie (Film by Ana Sofia Joanes), Diet for a New America (author John Robbins -son or Baskin and Robbins cofounder)