Why I Gave Up My Favorite Food

Yesterday Mercy for Animals released a new undercover video from an Idaho dairy farm. It documented horrific animal abuse. Workers are shown beating, kicking and jumping on the cows while the cows struggle and moan in pain.

After I learned about the video, I posted it on my personal Facebook page and wrote this:

There is just as much cruelty in a glass of milk, grilled cheese sandwich or egg omelet as there is in a hamburger. That is why I’m vegan. This video is hard to watch but it shows what can happen at a dairy farm.

Almost immediately someone disagreed because “family farms” from her experience were humanely run. This video is from a large “factory farm” and I agree that this type of cruelty is less likely to happen at a family run dairy farm. The men in this video behave like barbarians. However, family dairy farms are far from humane. Consider the following:

  • Humans don’t need cows milk. We are the only species who drinks another species milk. Human milk is for our babies just like cow’s milk is for theirs.
  • Dairy cows are artificially inseminated, even at small family farms.
  • Once the calves are born, the males are taken away from their mothers to become veal.
  • Once dairy cows are spent, they are sent to the slaughterhouse to become beef.
  • Cows can live as long as 20 years but cows raised for food often live just five short, miserable years.

Watch this short video to learn more:

Cheese used to be my favorite food. I ate it everyday and smothered salads, pizzas, quesadillas, crackers, hamburgers then veggie burgers, and omelets with it. I was one of those people who often said, “I could never give up cheese” and yet I did. It’s been over seven years since I’ve had it. I don’t miss it — despite being certain that I would.

After eating cheese and drinking milk most of my life, it was hard to change. Change is hard, but there are great non-dairy foods available that make the change easier than it’s ever been.

Homemade Pizza with Vegan Cheese and Sausage

My favorite dairy substitutes include:

Cookbook Resources

If you believe the cruelty at this Idaho dairy farm is an isolated case, you will find more Mercy for Animals undercover investigations here. MFA has filmed at four dairy farms and has documented animal abuse at all four farms.