The human body has no more need for cows’ milk than it does for dogs’ milk, horses’ milk, or giraffes’ milk.
Cadbury’s want you to adopt a cow!
The cruelty behind your Cadbury’s Dairy Milk
A CALF AND A HALF (VIVA!’S CADBURY FARMS INVESTIGATION)
Cadbury’s ludicrous promotion comes with a bizarre offer for families to adopt one of 20 cows and enter a draw to win a family farmyard weekend away to meet the animal. I say bizarre because the reality of the situation is nothing like the one they would like to have you believe.
The idea aimed at families is to submit an on-line a code number from packets of selected Cadbury’s chocolate and choosing the cow they would like to adopt “based on photos and qualities” provided on the site.
In the lead-up to the prize draw in late September, Cadbury will be interacting with families by providing families with “small moments of joy” through regular news and updates from the herd.
Cadbury brand manager David McDermott says: “This latest campaign will remind consumers that the great taste of Cadbury Dairy Milk is created using fresh ingredients from British and Irish farms while creating moments of joy over the summer with a moonique and engaging family campaign.”
McDermott adds: “For many people, Cadbury Dairy Milk was their first taste of chocolate thanks to the iconic glass and a half credentials but in research, we uncovered that one in five children do not know that milk comes from cows!”
They also do not know the terrible conditions of cows in factory farms where in reality Cabury’s milk is produced. The milk from the much promoted “Glass and half” does not come from cows grazing in some peaceful idyl in fields of buttercups, with the sun warming their backs and their calves by their sides, in most cases nothing could be further from the truth.
Here is the grim reality behind your, glass and a half milk.
Two or three times every day, dairy cows are hooked up to milk machines. They are commonly pushed to produce ten times more milk than is natural.”
Like other factory farmed animals the lot of a cow is a life filled with suffering and exploitation in dreadful conditions.
The dairy cow is kept constantly pregnant in a continuous and exhausting cycle of misery. Within two to three months of giving birth cows are impregnated again, mostly by artificial insemination. As lactation lasts around 10 months the cow is simultaneously pregnant and lactating for 6 to 8 months during each calving cycle. Cows have a 6 to 8 week period between lactation ceasing and their next calving.
In order to provide you with milk, a food that we like every other mammal no longer needs after weaning, she is milked two or three times each day and often much more frequently. After giving birth her calf is taken away within twenty-four hours after the calf has taken the colostrum, which in all animals protects the young one from disease. However the calf is removed before he or she can have any of the milk which must all be kept for humans, a calf never has any of his or her mother’s milk. Cows are good mothers, they are severely traumatised when their calves are taken away from them, they can bellow for days. In his book, The Pig Who Sang to the Moon Jeffrey Mason tells of an account given him by an RSPCA officer concerning one particular cow, who was considerably distraught for a period of six weeks by the loss of her calf. When the calf was removed she was beside herself with grief, gazing into the empty pen bellowing for hour after hour, only moving when forced to do so. Even after six weeks she would stare into the pen, it was as though her spirit was broken as she gazed into the pen in the forlorn hope that she would find her calf there.
Because of man’s interference a cow will produce as much as 7,000 litres of milk each year, an enormous amount far in access of that required by her calf, and three times the amount produced a century ago. This drastic increase is the result of injecting the cow with growth hormones to produce more milk. An outrageous and inhumane abuse of another living being; treating a cow as though she is nothing more than a milk producing machine, spouting milk rather like a spring spouts water.
The atrocities of course do not stop there. What happens to her calf? If he is male he is considered an unwanted by product of the dairy industry and unless he is required for breeding he is shot after barely a week of life. Here is an eye witness account of what happens in an intensive factory farm:
‘When I got to the farm, I could see that a cow had just calved. The young calf was just a few hours old and was suckling. I stood watching and smiling. There is no more beautiful sight. The farmer came over and – I thought – tousled the calf’s ear. But there was a gun in his other hand and he put it to the calf’s head. When the shot fired, the mother jumped and ran. The calf went down kicking but he didn’t die outright. He was dragged away, still kicking as the milk spilled from his mouth.’ :
Cows are selectively bred, genetically manipulated, and fed with concentrated feeds and hormones, as a result they produce ten times more milk than their calf would have needed to suckle. The dire consequences of over milking result in the painful, distressing and potentially fatal condition of mastitis, an infection of the udder, the antibiotics forced up her udders do little to control the disease: antibiotics to treat mastitis are painfully injected up the teat canal. As a precaution many farmers inject their entire herd. And keep in mind such treatments are not to ease the cow’s suffering but rather to improve the cow’s continued viability as a milk producing machine. Her udders as a consequence of man’s interventions are oversized, as many as two thirds of cows become lame from foot and leg disorders that result from difficulties walking due to the huge size of her udders. Often she can barely walk, so heavy and cumbersome are her udders. The dairy cow is forced in the way described above to produce ten litres of milk per day, normally a cow’s udder will hold only 2 litres. The overload of milk causes the udder to become so heavy that it drags on the ground.
Furthermore she becomes exhausted and her muscles waste away as a result of the enormous expenditure of energy required to produce these unnatural amounts of milk. After three years of such misery cows are utterly spent, exhausted and many die well short of their life expectancy of 21 years or more. There is a case of a cow in Ireland living until she was 39, so who knows cows may live longer in the wild than we realise. Those who somehow cope with the exhaustion, survive mastitis and other diseases are in any case slaughtered for their meat after giving birth to as many as eight calves, after between four to seven years of exploitation. Moreover as many as 25 percent of dairy cows are actually pregnant when they are killed.
Yes you will see cows in fields of course but most are in milking sheds, like you see in the Animal Aid video above, dark dank places with concrete floors – a major cause of lameness – tethered in a narrow stall unable to graze or follow their natural inclinations. Rather like battery hens many cows are kept in such conditions all year round, only a very few are put out to pasture. Grass and other feed consisting of high protein diet to increase milk yield is brought to them. This is called zero grazing and takes the cruelty of dairy farming to another level; grazing is a strong natural instinct as is the rearing of their young. In even more severe and inhumane scenarios cows are intensively milked day and night by computer automated machines, the old fashion farm where a cow is milked twice a day, twelve hours apart is becoming a thing of the past.
Any modicum of freedom is denied them, instead of standing in grass, in the warmth of the sun and the cool of the breeze they now stand on concrete floors in their own excrement, there is no mental stimulation, they suffer lameness and the misery of mastitis. Such intensive farming results in high levels of stress, disease and psychological damage.
Help to bring an end to this cruelty, please do not enter this promotion, eat chocolate or other dairy products
Cows are amongst the gentlest of breathing creatures
none show more passionate tenderness to their young when deprived of them and, in short, I am not ashamed to profess a deep love for these quiet creatures
Thomas de Quincey
Animal Rights: Cattle