How many animals are killed for various purposes?
In most parts of the world, it just seems to be rather unnecessary to cause any harm to animals, in order to live, and live well. It just doesn't seem necessary. You can live, and live in style, without eating animals, and for the most part, without using materials of animal origin, for clothing, shelter, or entertainment. Not everyone appreciates this; we need your help in getting the word out. Not everyone knows a shakahari or vegan, living comfortably, whom they can emulate. So we are trying to show people a little bit about our lives, and about how we live. You can help by providing youself as an example of a vegan who lives well, that prospective vegans can emulate. It would also help if you could put a link to EOMEO, on your web site.
In addition to showing examples of vegans who live well, we also need to maintain our own well-being, improve how well vegans live, by helping each other, indeed, by making a special effort to help other vegans. As non-vegans begin to see more and more examples of vegans who live well, and who are the kind of people who help each other to improve their lives, they will be increasingly less inclined to avoid being vegan, for fear of feeling like outcasts. More and more, there will be people and places "where vegan is normal."
Beside maintaining our educational web site, eoMeo has in the past maintained a vegan garden, that demonstrated how an abundance of wonderfully delicious plant-foods can be grown without the use of animal tissues, or animal excrement, to amend the soil, and without the use of animal "laborers." To have another vegan garden, all we need is land or economic resources to buy land. Do you have land that can be used for a vegan garden? If you want to operate a vegan farm, I would be glad to contribute my expertise, and my labor.
According to Vegan Outreach, about 9.8 billion (that's 9,800 million) animals were killed for food in the year 2000. So how many were killed, in total, for other purposes, for fur, in experimental laboratories, and in animal shelters? 40 million. Sound like alot? You might want to look at it this way: for every 4 animals killed for fur, in shelters, and in laboratories, combined, 980 animals were killed for food.
We thought you might like to see these two figures represented as 2 bars, shown side by side, and drawn to the same scale (Vegan Outreach's graph shows the bar for animals killed for fur, shelters, and laboratories, drawn to a different scale than the bar for animals killed for food. Plus their bar for animals killed for food is shown horizontally, and their bar for animals killed for fur, in shelters, or in laboratories, is shown vertically).
Bar 1: number of animals killed in 2000, for food: 9.8 billion
Bar 2: combined number, in 2000, of animals killed for fur, killed in animal shelters, and killed in research or testing laboratories: 40 million (40,000,000).
Having trouble seeing bar number 2? It's there. Look closely, to the right of bar number 1. Can you see it yet?
How about if we lop off some zeros? Will that help you conceptualize the comparison? How about if I told you that the number of animals killed for food, compared to the combined number of animals killed for fur, in shelters, and in research or testing laboratories, is: 980 to 4. Or how about if we put it this way: considering all the animals killed for fur, in shelters, and in researching or testing laboratories, combined — for each animal killed by any of these methods — 245 animals were killed for food. And yet — 40 million animals were killed for fur, in shelters, and in research or testing laboratories. 40 million. The number killed for fur, in shelters, and for research or testing, is quite a substantial number. And yet in pales in comparison to the number killed for food.
Some animal rights organizations urge people to boycott the fur business. Some animal welfare or animal rights organizations try to rescue animals from shelters. Some animal rights organizations try to convince people not to use animals in laboratory experiments, and try to convince people not to buy products that were mass-produced, after small samples of the products (compared to the amount manufactured and sold) were tested on animals. Vegan Outreach urges people not to eat food of animal origin. Given the figures, they think that simply not eating animal food is likely to have a greater effect in reducing animal death and suffering, than anything else, and I agree.
What eoMeo does, is identify which ingredients in foods, and in all the various materials we use in our daily lives, in the industrialized world, have their origin in animal husbandry, and which materials don't. It isn't always obvious. Having this information enables people who wish to avoid harming animals, to make a knowledgable decision in regard to which products or materials to avoid buying, and which products or materials to buy — especially if they need materials in large quantities, or plan to make repeated purchases.
The more people that see this eoMeo site, gather information from it, and decide not to use animal-origin materials, the more impact there is on the lives of animals.
So I have a two-fold goal: (1) get as many people to the site as possible; (2) get as much information as possible, on the site. Perhaps I am wrong, but I tend to believe that our approach of controlling oneself has more of an effect in reducing animal slaughter, and animal suffering, than the approach of making a public outcry about cruelty to animals, and asking other people to change their habits. We (1) provide people with information and (2) we know, and accept, that people will make their own choices. I have some faith that they will reduce the amount of animal-origin materials they purchase — because I know that people understand that all animals have a desire to live, and I know that people have a desire — to let animals live. It is just a matter of getting in the habit of using only non-animal materials, and having people view this as a good habit.. Doing what we already know is the right way to do things.
Yet I don't expect to see a dramatic difference in my lifetime. I don't think that expecting others to change is a realistic goal. What I think is a realistic goal, is that, by practicing ahimsa as well as I can, perhaps I can nudge — just a little bit — agriculture, industry, and commerce, in a better, happier direction. Perhaps practicing ahimsa can help each of us become just a little bit happier as a person, or, if we are already happy, stay happy. Perhaps, by practicing ahimsa, the consciousness of each of us, variable from smaller to bigger — can be bigger.
In 2010 I started putting in google advertisements to help defray the cost of maintaing a web site. Unfortunately, occasionally animal-origin materials may slip by my efforts to keep them out. Until 2012, what we are paying per month for web site hosting service was greater than the revenues from advertising. We have gradudally increased our number of visitors. At the beginning of 2012, shakahara.com's popularity rank according to Alexa.com reached under 13,000,000 (there were then less than 13 million web sites that attract more visitors per month). By 2012 Jun, shakahara.com's popularity rank has, over the last 6 months, consistantly been under 10,000,000. Check it out yourself.
I have put many many hours into this site.
I appreciate any contribution you can make, whether labor or money.