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International Animal Rights ConferenceInternational Animal Rights Conference
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Sunday, 08.09.2019   12:30-13:20   Room A
Transforming farms into sanctuaries
Real change for a real world
Sarah Heiligtag

As vegan activists we are often busy with fighting against something and we tend to forget that every against also needs a for in order to be credible. As we want exploitive (factory) farms to close down, we need to support the emergence of productive vegan farms. Transforming animal agriculture into vegan agriculture is an important part of changing the system, as the earth`s population will always depend on farmers to produce our food.

If we want the numbers of slaughtered animals to go down we need to not only step into the places where they are being raised and killed, but we need to prevent further raising and killing by presenting alternatives to those who raise and kill. That is, we need to bring the farmers on board.

There are three main reasons for focusing on changing farms into sanctuaries:

  1. If farmers start producing cruelty-free foods (instead of giving up farming altogether) killings will go down as this directly disrupts and changes the supply chain.
  2. We need to show, not only the general public, but also the farmers how change can actually happen. We depend on farmers, not only for food, but also for change, as we need them on our side in order to be successful.
  3. There is nothing more powerful than farmers telling their stories of the reality of animal exploitation. Criticism from within tends to reach more people than criticism from those who have only a theoretical idea of what farming is about.

There are several parts of the (f)actual change into a liberated world, setting examples of how a vegan world could function and helping others to transform is indispensable.

In my talk, I will focus on my work with farmers, including our strategies and challenges, and what everyone can contribute to changing farms.










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