This petition has been started by 'Occupy for Animals' and was submitted to the European Parliament for registration at date of August 31, 2012.

All information concerning this petition is contained here:

http://occupyforanimals.wix.com/meat#!home/mainPage
-----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

About this petition and the related website:

Everybody knows what 'meat' is. Meat is animal flesh that is eaten as food. Generally, this means skeletal muscles, fat and other tissues, but may also describe other ‘edible’ parts, such as organs and offal. The term ‘meat’ most often denotes the flesh of mammalian species (pigs, cattle, lambs, etc.), specifically reared for human consumption; it generally excludes fish and other seafood, poultry, and other species, including wild or non-domesticated animals (game). Terminology varies worldwide, depending on country-specific, cultural or religious preferences.

What doesn’t vary, is that the product we call 'meat', was a sentient and conscious living being… right until the moment it was slaughtered and ‘processed’.

When talking 'meat', there is more, much more to consider than just the rampant cruelty involved in the murder of species other than our own, which is somehow deemed acceptable. Of equal concern is the fact that scientifically, meat and dairy, in fact all animal protein, is acknowledged as being harmful to human health. Additionally, raising animals for food requires massive amounts of land, food, energy and water, and contributes to climate change. Livestock is recognized as a serious threat to the environment, causing air, water and soil pollution.

We have created this website to compile all this information in one single place; it covers:

- animal cruelty
- diseases linked to meat and dairy consumption
- livestock and environment
- livestock and climate change
- meat production and water usage
- meat demand and deforestation
- human starvation
- slaughter
- exploitation of slaughterhouse workers

Everything on these pages is based upon scientific facts and information taken from reliable and established sources. All sources and references are acknowledged at the bottom of the relevant page. There is no personal interpretation on these pages; this enables you, the reader, to reach your own conclusions, rather that be manipulated into a certain way of thinking.

It is not uncommon to hear people saying that vegans care only for animals and not for people. That is a misperception. By the time you have read all this information, you will understand that vegans DO care a great deal for people. And that veganism isn’t just good for animals, it’s good for people AND the planet, too.

We, at Occupy for Animals, care greatly about animals; that is a fact. At the same time, we are equally concerned about the health of our children and grandchildren, and yours. We are also increasingly concerned for their future, because of the current state of the climate and our environment.

We care about the starving children, the majority of whom are barely surviving, in countries that export most of their grain production to western countries where it is used to feed livestock. We care about the farmers in developing countries who are being driven off their land because their efficient, plant-based agricultural model is being replaced with intensive livestock rearing. We care about the slaughterhouse workers who face physical dangers and psychological problems based on their work, and continue to be exploited by a greedy system.

We are concerned that animal products these days are sold with a feel-good story: the animal was humanely raised, it was cage-free, it was free-range, it was pasture-fed, it’s hormone-free, etc. Excluded from these stories is the fact that an animal was killed; that he or she was a sentient and conscious being who didn’t want to die.

Excluded also, is that meat dramatically increases the risk of many diseases such as cancer, heart disease, harmful cholesterol levels, diabetes and obesity; that meat production contributes to climate change and damages the environment; that it is responsible for most deforestation; that it contributes to poverty in developing countries and to human starvation; and that the person who slaughtered the animal - the person we almost never consider - has to cope daily with the trauma of his/her job.

Vegans care about all of this, as you will see in every section of this website. We hope you will care about it, too, and read all the pages here (most of them are short!), because these things impact us all.

Our petition asks for an honest labeling of all meat and dairy products, among other points.

By signing this petition the message that you can read under the tab 'petition letter' will instantly be sent to Mr John Dalli, European Commissioner for Health and Consumer Policy.

We thank you very much in advance for taking the time to read the information compiled on our website and to sign and support our petition.

 

Occupy for Animals!

Letter to
European Commissioner for Health and Consumer Policy (John DALLI) European Union
I just signed the following petition addressed to: European Union.

Implementation of an honest labeling mechanism for meat and dairy products

Petition started by 'Occupy for Animals'. All information concerning this petition is contained here: http://occupyforanimals.wix.com/meat#!home/mainPage
------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

Introduction:

After due consideration of the several points presented below, we turn to the European Union with a simple, reasonable demand:

the immediate implementation of an honest labeling mechanism for meat (including fish/seafood and poultry/eggs) and dairy products, with a statutory government warning clearly informing consumers of the considerable health hazards and environmental impact linked to their consumption.

This is one of the seven related points we are presenting here for your consideration.

Rationale:

Just as smokers are continually being made aware of the health risks of tobacco, and being encouraged to give up smoking through statutory government warnings on cigarette packs, consumers MUST be similarly informed about the considerable health risks of consuming meat, dairy, poultry and seafood products.

Just as advertisements for tobacco were banned years ago, we now demand a similar ban on all advertisements for meat (including fish/seafood and poultry/eggs) and dairy products on TV, in magazines and newspapers. Dishonest marketing claims state and/or suggest that the consumption of meat and dairy is GOOD for human health, and neglect to mention that meat production is a serious threat to the environment (air, water and soil pollution) and that livestock contributes significantly to climate change.

In order to provide consumers with the appropriate means to make an informed choice, an honest labeling of all meat (including fish/seafood and poultry/eggs) and dairy products, backed by a complete ban on advertising is called for.

Scientific evidence regarding our claims has been compiled for your reference at the following link: http://occupyforanimals.wix.com/meat#!home/mainPage

1) Recommendation by the UN and the EU

As the global population surges towards a projected 9.1 billion people by 2050, western tastes for diets rich in meat and dairy products are unsustainable, says the report from United Nations Environment Programme’s (UNEP) international panel of sustainable resource management, published in June 2010. A global shift towards a vegan diet is vital to save the world from hunger, fuel poverty and the worst impacts of climate change, the UN report said.

"Impacts from agriculture are expected to increase substantially due to population growth increasing consumption of animal products. Unlike fossil fuels, it is difficult to look for alternatives: people have to eat. A substantial reduction of impacts would only be possible with a substantial worldwide diet change, away from animal products."

For more information, please visit: http://occupyforanimals.wix.com/meat#!livestock--environment/c1czz

This is a serious red-flag warning expressed by the UN and we demand that the product label on ALL meat (including fish/seafood and poultry/eggs) and dairy products carries the following mention:
​​​
"In order to safeguard your own/your family’s health and save the world from hunger, fuel poverty and the worst impacts of climate change, the United Nations and the European Union strongly urge the population to adopt a vegan diet (June 2010)."
​

​2) Cancers and other diseases

Numerous studies have conclusively demonstrated that the consumption of meat dramatically increases the risk of the following life-threatening diseases:

Obesity
Diabetes
Heart disease
Harmful cholesterol levels
Colorectal cancer
Breast cancer
Prostate cancer
Other cancers such as pancreatic and kidney cancer

Meat also contains antibiotics, steroids and other growth hormones that are harmful to human health, not to mention pus cells and adrenalin released into the bloodstream and carried to the muscles and tissues of the animal due to extreme stress and fear prior to and during slaughter.

Information here: http://occupyforanimals.wix.com/meat#!meat--diseases/c1fvf

Two themes consistently emerge from innumerable cancer studies: fruit and vegetables help to reduce risk, while meat, animal products, and other fatty foods are frequently found to increase risk.

Consumption of dietary fat drives production of hormones, which, in turn, promotes growth of cancer cells in hormone-sensitive organs such as the breast and prostate. Meat is devoid of the protective effects of fiber, antioxidants, phytochemicals, and other helpful nutrients, and it contains high concentrations of saturated fat and potentially carcinogenic compounds, which may increase one’s risk of developing several different types of cancer.

Vegetarian diets and diets rich in high-fiber plant foods such as whole grains, legumes, vegetables and fruit, offer a measure of protection. Fiber greatly speeds the passage of food through the colon, effectively removing carcinogens, and fiber actually changes the type of bacteria that is present in the intestine, so there is reduced production of carcinogenic secondary bile acids. Plant foods are also naturally low in fat and rich in antioxidants and other anti-cancer compounds. Not surprisingly, vegetarians are at the lowest risk for cancer and have a significantly reduced risk compared to meat-eaters.

Consumers have a right to know that these products compromise their health and that they would be better off not consuming these products, but rather vegan products instead. We demand that the label on ALL meat (including fish/seafood and poultry/eggs) and dairy products contains the following mention:

"WARNING: this product is known as to significantly increase the risk of numerous diseases such as diabetes, obesity, heart disease, harmful cholesterol levels, colorectal cancer, breast cancer, prostate cancer, pancreatic and kidney cancer."
​

​3) Meat comes from sentient and conscious beings

Meat products that are being sold in stores today are packaged to look as little as possible as something that was once a living, breathing and sentient being. Most consumers are unaware that the animals they consume have spent their entire lives deprived of all that is natural to them. So-called ‘organic’ and ‘free-range’ labels are simply misleading, as they are so far removed from the truth of factory farming.

Information here: http://occupyforanimals.wix.com/meat#!the-victims/ct0b
and here: http://occupyforanimals.wix.com/meat#!animal-kill-counter/cq5j

Consumers are unaware of the conditions in which the animals have been held and ultimately butchered - some even while being fully conscious. If consumers knew what they do not know yet, many would likely choose not to be part of the suffering inflicted on innocent animals. The truth is, there is no ‘humane’ way to kill a creature that does not want to die; many would therefore prefer not to support the meat and dairy industry.

It is also morally wrong to treat sentient beings - even after their death - as mere commodities, without considering that these were once living and breathing beings, with the same right to exist on this planet as we have. The animals exploited for food are in no way different than the animals that many people keep as pets and share their homes with. Treating animals as mere commodities is suggesting that it is okay to exploit and kill animals, be it for food, for fashion or for any other reason.

The EU (European Union) has recognized animals as being 'sentient beings' since 1997. The animal welfare protocol included in the 1997 Treaty of Amsterdam introduced a significant change, as, for the first time in European law, animals were referred to as sentient beings - able to feel pain and suffering. The Treaty of Lisbon, which entered into force on 1 December 2009, incorporated an article on animal welfare, which provides that:

“In formulating and implementing the Union's agriculture, fisheries, transport, internal market, research and technological development and space policies, the Union and the Member States shall, since animals are sentient beings, pay full regard to the welfare requirements of animals, while respecting the legislative or administrative provisions and customs of the Member States relating in particular to religious rites, cultural traditions and regional heritage”.

​Information here: http://occupyforanimals.wix.com/meat#!animals-are-sentient-and-conscious-being/c1ms3

Since the European Union has recognized animals as sentient beings in the Treaty of Amsterdam and in Article 13 of the Lisbon Treaty, and since scientists have agreed in the Cambridge Declaration on Consciousness in Non-Human Animals which was publicly proclaimed in Cambridge, UK, on July 7, 2012, at the conclusion of the Conference, at Churchill College, University of Cambridge, by Philip Low, David Edelman and Christof Koch that nonhuman animals are indeed conscious, we demand that the labeling of meat products contains the following mention:

"This product was made from body parts of an animal that the EU recognizes as a 'sentient being' both in the Amsterdam Treaty of 1997 and under Article 13 of the Treaty of Lisbon signed 1 December 2009. This sentient being has been harmed and ultimately butchered against his/her will. The animal was conscious of his/her life and did not want to die."

​4) Butcher shops

Butcher shops must carry big signs, clearly visible and prominently placed over each of their sales counters, mentioning all of the above points. This sign must mention the following:

"Meat is known to significantly increase the risk of life-threatening diseases including diabetes, obesity, heart disease, harmful cholesterol levels, colorectal cancer, breast cancer, prostate cancer, pancreatic and kidney cancer.

This product was made from body parts of an animal that the EU recognizes as a 'sentient being' both in the Amsterdam Treaty of 1997 and under Article 13 of the Treaty of Lisbon signed 1 December 2009. This sentient being has been harmed and ultimately butchered against his/her will. The animal was conscious of his/her life and did not want to die.

In order to save the world from hunger, fuel poverty and the worst impacts of climate change, the United Nations and the European Union urge the population to adopt a vegan diet (June 2010)."


5) Restaurants, fast food restaurants, snacks, take outs as well as all other places that sell meat and/or dairy

These places must carry clearly visible and prominently placed signs on their walls as well as a mention on top of each page of their menu card stating that:

"Meat is known as to significantly increase the risk of life-threatening diseases including diabetes, obesity, heart disease, harmful cholesterol levels, colorectal cancer, breast cancer, prostate cancer, pancreatic and kidney cancer.

This product was made from body parts of an animal that the EU recognizes as a 'sentient being' both in the Amsterdam Treaty of 1997 and under Article 13 of the Treaty of Lisbon signed 1 December 2009. This sentient being has been harmed and ultimately butchered against his/her will. The animal was conscious of his/her life and did not want to die.

In order to save the world from hunger, fuel poverty and the worst impacts of climate change, the United Nations and the European Union urge the population to adopt a vegan diet (June 2010)."

​
6) No meat, no dairy in schools

Considering all of the above mentioned health risks linked to meat and dairy consumption, we believe that is irresponsible to serve our children school meals that contain meat, fish/seafood or poultry/eggs. We demand that governments take responsibility for the health or the younger generations by serving only vegan meals in schools, so as to avoid disease and promote a healthy diet to children, starting from a young age.

Bovine milk should also be replaced by soy, rice or any other plant- based milk. The nutritional rationale for including milk in school meal programs was based primarily on its calcium content. Milk was presumed to promote bone health and integrity. Time and again, this has proven false. Milk-drinking children do not have stronger bones than children who get their calcium from other foods. A study published by the American Medical Association in the Archives of Pediatric and Adolescent Medicine this year showed that active children who consume the largest quantities of milk have more bone fractures than those who consume less. This was not surprising. Prior studies show that milk consumption does not improve bone health or reduce the risk of osteoporosis and actually creates other health risks. Milk is the number one source of saturated fat in children’s diets (PCRM 2012).

Information here: http://occupyforanimals.wix.com/meat#!milk--dairy/cs7f

Milk and dairy should therefore be off school menus. Children can get all the calcium they need from non-dairy sources such as beans, tofu, broccoli, kale, collard greens, breads, cereals, and non-dairy, calcium-fortified beverages, without any of the health detriments associated with dairy product consumption.


7) Ban advertisements for ALL meat and dairy products

We demand a ban on all advertisements for ALL meat (including fish/seafood and poultry/eggs) and dairy products on TV, in magazines and newspapers to avoid dishonest marketing practices.

Given that science has proven that meat and dairy products actively HARM human health; that the production of such products is incredibly wasteful in terms of water usage and highly inefficient in terms of grain usage; that livestock contributes significantly to climate change and is a serious threat to the environment in general (air, water and soil pollution); people MUST be encouraged to dump meat and to adopt a healthy vegan diet, and thus advertising for meat and dairy should no longer be permitted as it suggests that these products are harmless, which they are definitely not.

Information here: http://occupyforanimals.wix.com/meat#!meat-production-wastes-natural-resources/c1a9v
here: http://occupyforanimals.wix.com/meat#!livestock--human-starvation/crp9
and here: http://occupyforanimals.wix.com/meat#!killing-fields/c1jpu

It is to be expected that efforts to promote plant-based diets will be met with resistance from the meat industry. But that's a small price to pay in order to help prevent poverty, starvation, climate change, loss of wildlife, and environmental damage. Not to mention human diseases and animal suffering.

Sincerely,