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Vegan. This more modern and ethical way of eating has grown and continues to grow throughout the years, creating a movement stating, and protecting the rights of the species that are a part of many diets.
As this contemporary regimen creates a negative impact on the Canadian economy, which relies so heavily upon the dairy industry, the dilemmas become not only ethical but economical as well.
From an ethical perspective, animals across the globe are continuously tortured and killed for our personal gain, known to society as the pleasure of taste we experience while devouring meat, or even a simple chocolate bar. Although almost all recognize the dead animal in their steak, many overlook the dairy industry, ignoring the malice present in the making of their milk. As fairly naive beings, the corporations often have little to no trouble painting alluring images in our heads, convincing us through the simple picture of grass matched with a cow that roaming freely is a large part of the lives of the animals involved.
Elaborating, some other ghastly acts performed in these establishments include forcefully and continuously impregnating cows—without time in between pregnancies—to keep the cows lactating at the most maximal yields possible. Once the babies are born, ripping baby calves away from their mothers within the first hours after birth to maximize profit is a regular activity. This results in damage to the mental state of not only the calves but also the traumatized mothers. Most of the female offspring lead lives almost identical to their mother's, whereas the males and surplus females are violently slaughtered to be sold as veal. Consequently, without the dairy industry, the veal industry would simply be non-existent.
Sadly, even though the milk bags may display those treasured simple words: happy cows, making us feel like we are truly contributing to their happiness and well being, certain aspects found in industrial farms are still present. We are, in fact, contributing to tearing their babies away at or shortly after birth, and to the slaughter of males and excessive females.
Fortunately, organisations such as PETA, and individuals creating films and productions including What the Health, Cowspiracy, Forks Over Knives and Vegucated have begun to expose the gruesome truths hidden behind the packaging. These situations of exposure are a crucial element in change, demonstrating to the general population the sources of their ailments (more specifically, dairy).
As mentioned before, many individuals have started to recognize these injustices, creating a more sensible way of consumption. In 2017 alone, there was an increase in demand by 987 percent for vegetarian and vegan food on the platform Just Eat.
Currently, a decently large number of people have been discovering, to their own disappointment, the evil truths of the production. In consequence, the only consumers holding the industry together are those who have not been exposed to what happens behind the scenes, believe that dairy brings necessary health benefits and those who simply do not care for any species other than humans.
Although the downfall of the dairy industry can be seemingly threatening to the economy, a variety of substitutes present in the diets of vegans would be sold at an almost parallel rate to dairy products, if we were to stop selling dairy, repairing—at least partially—the financial loss experienced by the government. Despite the fact that many jobs would be lost at first, there would be a much higher demand in the industries providing substitutes for dairy. Consequently, this would open new doors for the individuals who had previously been laid off from their job in industrial farming.
To conclude, with a large and ascending number of the civic taking manners into their own hands, veganism becomes undeniably popular among a certain public. Even though the economic damages that may be done are reversible, a query remains: Will ethics ever hold more value than the economy?