Global Farm Animal Welfare Opportunities – Lewis Bollard

Global Farm Animal Welfare Opportunities - Lewis Bollard



we will start with a talk on global farm animal welfare opportunities by Luis bollard Luis Collard leads the open flattery project strategy for farm animal welfare that hold it that was really appropriately enthusiastic prior to joining open philanthropy Luis worked as a policy adviser and international liaison to the CEO at the Humane Society of the US HSUS he has a BA from Harvard University in social social studies and a JD from Yale Law School please welcome Luis yo Thank You Jan let's see if go the Big Pig welcome all thanks for coming out to hear about farm animals I think I know most of you already but if any of you want to say hi later on we're ready to come by and say hi you're going to spend a lot of time on convincing you to care about animals but more talking about some of the things we're supporting why but more importantly some of the things you could support and some of the things we could think about for the future so this is just a quick rundown of what we fund it to date at the open plants we project my hope is that this is about to increase by about 10 million dollars in the next week we'll make another grants I hope but what you can kind of see here is we have supported a lot of corporate campaigns a lot of work focused on reforming the worst practices in the lair hand industry and the broiler chicken industry we've also supported work on fish ball Fair on China and India did a number of other things like good food Institute falls under the general operating support category their animal charity evaluators some other similar groups about 60% of the grants to date have been International and that's what I'll be explaining why today so why Fund globally this by the way is a cow that I met in India most of these photos are from photos photos that I took myself which I apologize in advance also going to be talking about the current opportunity some of the things we're funding and future opportunities things that could be funded in the future so why global so this is really the only animal cruelty shot that I've included here we familiar to most of you this is an image of a battery cage at a farm that we visited in Andhra Pradesh in India and our best estimate is that about 80 percent of hens globally are in battery cages very similar to this so if you went into a facility in the u.s. it would look a little different there be an automated air glare belt rather than the individual pickup of eggs that was going on here but otherwise it would be basically the same as this and from a hens perspective it's the same whether you're confined in a cage in India in the US in China or anywhere and to the basic case for focusing on a global approach then is that these hens are experiencing the same kind of suffering no matter where they are this really breaks down the numbers by category of animals so what you see if you look first at Royal chickens of which there are about 23 billion that's live animal numbers you might have heard sometimes that 60 billion chickens are slaughtered a year globally this is the number that are just alive at any point in time so if we think we're most concerned about the experience of animals at any point in time this gives you a sense of just how many animals are on predominantly factory farms not all factory farms but predominantly factory farmed right now and what probably immediately stands out to you within each of these categories is that the United States although significant is very much in the minority of the number of animals being confined globally particularly when you look at the category of farmed fish at the end and you see this kind of a broad range there that's our best estimate is 35 to 120 billion a very broad range because we really don't know how many farms which there are you see a tiny fraction of those animals are in the US and it's not really the case as the next slide which it's not really the case this is u.s. consumption coming from other countries the trade in global animal products isn't huge what's primarily going on here for instance with the huge bar sort of China is domestic consumption within China so if we don't address address China if we don't address India if we don't address other parts of Asia then we're really not going to deal with the bulk of animal suffering globally so courtesy of pro veg Sebastien their representative is in the audience today this cool slide breaks down by countries the amount of meat consumed so the color is the amount of meat consumed per capita and the size is the total amount of meat consumed and again what you see here is the United States is big it's certainly eating more meat than our geography would suggest it should but there are other parts of the world that are really big too obviously Europe and China well outsized compared to their geography and the trend lines aren't great either so if you look at China obviously the the chickens line really stands out here but even if you look at the Ducks or the pigs you see a pretty fast growth rate in the scheme of things two three four times higher than the level of those farm animals was just 4050 years ago where the Chinese population has not increased by anywhere near that much and then obviously if you look at chickens you to see a phenomenal growth rate in terms of the number of chickens being farmed in China this is something you're seeing across a number of countries particularly in East Asia and this gives you a little breakdown of from a reform perspective or legal protection perspective where we're at there are very basic legal protections in place for farm animals if they are in place at all globally so the red countries on here have no farm animal welfare laws whatsoever on the books they're yellow countries have some form of law in the book that could be applicable but that is either not being a forced or is very weak and if you're familiar with the US legal framework for farm animals you'll know there are only two federal laws only one of them is enforced and that one only applies to mammals at Florida and its relative very small portion of countries that have what I've here called strong was I think most people would dispute that these are strong farm animal laws they're only strong relative to the top cool lack of legislation in the rest of the world so current opportunities what can we do right now to address our mental suffering and given this is a relatively short amount of time and I want to leave more time for questions and discussion and engagement I'm just going to talk about two things that we focused a lot of resources on within this space and then talk about a couple of other future opportunities so the first one is Kay tree campaigns and corporate campaigns and in the audience today we have aaron ross and david come and heidi who has been at the center of these campaigns for the humane league and the open wing alliance these are campaigns that have gone after companies to really get them to reform the conditions in which their animals are kept and to get rid of some of the worst practices within factory farming and for those of you familiar with battery cages particularly horrific practice something where corporate pledges have the capacity to really phase that out and to relieve some of the suffering these animals experience so you see here is just a kind of quick rundown of what that looks like for the animals this is a photo on the left that i took at factory farm in india and on the right this is a cage free photo from a major industrial cage free facility it's still not a great life for hens there are too many hens in there there are all sorts of problems they have I do think it's a meaningful improvement and we're going to have a report on this soon that will break down whether I'm right about that or not so this is a campaign that was put out by animal equality in Mexico campaigning against Ariana this is an example of globalizing these campaigns so first in 2015 and then udderly 2016 these campaigns had huge success in the u.s. getting the largest US supermarkets fast food companies other food companies to phase out battery cages those campaigns have now gone global focus here on Latin America but also focused in this case another animal's body protest in Spain in this case focus in the European Union as well to get as many global food companies as possible to commit to phasing out these cages so that we can ultimately eliminate battery cages globally the second major focus of current opportunities I'd like to raises is China and what you see here is a survey that was done three years ago it's not a totally representative survey this was based on a university sending students home with questionnaires to their parents but those students went home across 26 different regions across China and they put various checks in place and it was a sample of 6,000 so it's really the best data we have on what the average Chinese citizen feels about farm animal welfare and I think this is generally something to be pretty optimistic about so there were some things in the survey where a lot of people didn't understand the concept of animal welfare weren't familiar with it but what you see here is when they asked specific questions about specific practices they said do you think that rearing pigs on cement floors which is absolutely standard practice across the pork industry not just in China but in the US do you think that's acceptable the majority of Chinese respondents to the survey said no they said is it okay to kill fowl or chicken in front of cages where other chickens are captain if you've ever been to a live animal market and India or somewhere else in the developing world as is totally standard again this was something that most people thought was unacceptable and most people were in favor of passing a general animal welfare law which is something that China still doesn't have but hopefully will over the next few years these are a couple of things we've supported in China we've taken two approaches there the first is building capacity within the government so there are a number of people within the government the Ministry of Agriculture the Chinese Veterinary Medical Association who are interested in addressing some of the worst practices in China and so a lot of what these grants seek to do is to empower those parts of the government to provide them with a kind of technical help they need to get up to world-class standards in animal welfare and to slowly create change through that institutional system the other approach we've taken is supporting meat reduction if it's within the country so this is a wild aid campaign poster six Chinese celebrities who eat of them in this poster is endorsing the message of eating less meat and the campaign has really focused around environmental concerns but deliberately focusing on less meat of all varieties and not just less red meat but less less meat so the China's really fast-growing meat reject or you can hopefully come down over time future opportunities you're probably thinking this isn't the farm animal but actually it is a farm animal this dog was previously a farmed meat dog and that's of course a peck so fetch what can we do – what can we do to help fish and this graph really kind of illustrates what's been going on you see that since 1985 the number the volume because we don't get actual numbers and the statistics but the volume of fish brought in wild court hasn't increased and that's really a factor of how efficiently commercial fishermen have depleted the world's oceans that it's really impossible for them to bring in more fish now that doing more and more work every year just to get the same amount of fish but because the demand for fish has increased dramatically over the same time period there's been a huge growth in farmed fish and at this point it seems like the for human consumption is actually more farms than while the reason why wild still looks bigger here is that this includes wild fish court to feed the farmed fish and wild caught fish court to feed to other farm animals something else we need to do is help build the movement globally so this is a small Taiwanese group having a protest in Taipei and thinking about where there are these groups that we're really not connected with currently whether they're in Taiwan whether they're in Indonesia in China and Japan and Korea across these countries that have large numbers of farm animals and it's seen very little activism today and then something where I want to focus more on planting project is how we can reach these groups provide them a support and empower them to grow and then there's the technological solutions and so this is the impossible foods burger many of you may be familiar with and thinking about how we help these technologies to expand beyond where they are right now The Impossible Foods Company just got a seventy five million dollar investment infusion both from the open plants we project Bill Gates and the number of other investors we're seeing a number of companies within this space doing some really impressive work in terms of developing clean meat clean animal products plant-based meats and I think there's a huge amount of room to grow in that space so with that I'd like to open up to a discussion I think given most you're already pretty familiar with animal issues and you'll probably be more useful to kind of see what's on your mind what you think the future opportunities are and what you'd be interested in discussing or disagreeing with me about thanks Ari instead of ours the world just acted upon common it is more than supported is actually focused on support camp I haven't much really underlying part a preventive my yeah I think it's a great question so if anyone didn't hear it or on the video it's asking why in many parts of the world there isn't yet an organized animal rights movement I think this would be a great topic for someone to do a PhD dissertation on or major research paper I think that there are some explanations out there but they're far from satisfying so you know people often give cultural explanations say well you know in Britain the animal welfare movement started in the 1830s and a lot of the u.s. movement came over from Britain but if you read some really good articles that have been written on Wikipedia recently actually been commissioned and written on Wikipedia about the history of animal rights movements in other countries you'll see that in 16th century Japan there was a lot of concern about animal rights and animal welfare and it's similar at other points in the history of India of Indonesia and other countries so I think that saying it's just a cultural thing is kind of an easy and easy get out I think that we haven't done much organizing we haven't really tried in a lot of these places and it hasn't been funding that has been in the u.s. I think the funding situation for farm animal groups and activists is far better in the u.s. than it is in other parts of the world but I would love to see more research on what causes that and more importantly how we can rectify that yeah that try to engage government or museum is are generally already anyway help do it or you need to persuade them to become vegetarians and be prepared what are very general response most community health it is general to the environment like what you find works best for doing sure so question about the receptiveness of governments and what messages work best for them I think that most governments are not very receptive to working on either reforming the conditions of farm animals or reducing total meat consumption I think that has a lot to do with the power of farmers and agriculture as a lobby group in most of the world and has a lot to do with the fact that we haven't yet as an animal movement or as EAS or as other people concerned about animal welfare really mobilized in the same way as farmers have but I do think that there is an increasing receptivity to it I think within Europe there's been a lot more concern for a far longer period of time both about farm animal welfare but also about the environmental and health costs of high meat consumption levels and so it seems like governments are more receptive to that I think that in places like China we're seeing the government becoming increasingly open to the idea that it's simply not sustainable for their population to continue eating more meat at the level that is currently and that were the population that will be rapidly aging because of the one-child policy they have real health concerns about the kind of chronic diseases that high meat consumption could work about so I think that there are messages that work and I think for instance in India there's long being a government receptiveness to animal welfare animal welfare is enshrined in the Constitution there's a law passed in 1947 right after independence putting down pretty strict standards in terms of animal cruelty it's not well enforced so I think that in a lot of the world there is their receptivity and probably more so than at the US government where the lobby where the agricultural lobby has such power I think a lot of other countries were getting to a point where there really is the potential to bring about meaningful changes through the legislative process so far new you know we're in for three days I was proactively sure yeah so the question is about education and how we can reach more young people with animal welfare messages I think this is really important I think the big question is always about scalability and how you can make programs that scale across a large population I think there's some really interesting work going on in China right now with a group called act for Asia animals they are working in schools to develop curriculums that encourage both more concern for animals and more concern for humans a lot of the programs in the u.s. at the Humane it's a sort of humane education variety at the primary school level traditionally we're quite local and weren't able to achieve a lot of scale I think that's one reason why groups often focused at universities which tend to be larger and where they can reach more people more easily but I think it's a great challenge to think about how we can reach more students with us or websites with us or apps you know whatever the platform is to reach more people and get that scale first how are you thinking about effective advocacy with the organizations that you're funding personal Rover may be your innovation organizations have been underfunded that literally explode I want in the demonstration that they were doing look like the sort of demonstration you wouldn't bond like that primarily disaster was probably done in the United States or no set of places like that and it's been my impression that OPP it takes the things that you think are working in fun stuff but then doesn't really sort of dictate how that's done you feel that way about these sorts of groups or do you also give them some sort of advocacy guidance yeah I mean I think that so it's a question about groups in other parts of the world where they may not have developed particularly effective tactics yet and Bruce Friedrich for those who don't knows the head of the good food Institute was previously at PETA where I imagine you dressed up in chicken costumes at various times the the the I suspect that that in a lot of cases there's kind of a natural learning curve here that this that that it is useful to have groups organically testing what works in that environment and as much as it might well be the case that those Taiwanese activists have not yet worked out how to be really effective they almost certainly know more about being effective animal activists and in Taiwan than I do and so I think that as a funder we try to be humble on that side we're not necessarily humble in terms of aggressively seeking out funding opportunities and trying to find what we think will be the most effective funding opportunities but I think we probably right now have more to offer in terms of financial resources than we do in terms of coaching or mentoring or other things particularly given how different these environments tend to be if we're looking to fund globally this is a free-range cat the I think that's a really interesting question in terms of the ethics of animals that wouldn't have existed otherwise and energy say it becomes particularly stark in the case of wild caught fish there are certainly those who believe that wild caught fishes lifes are you know net positive good life's to have and that that might even outweigh the pain of being caught at the end of life that wouldn't mean you think it's like the best solutions and for them to be caught at the end of their life and I suspect that as horrible as it probably is to be swallowed by whale it may be better than being dragged along behind a trawling vessel for hours and slowly suffocated so I think in the current set up it's quite likely that the alternative for these animals as bleak as it is maybe less bad but that that certainly is something worth researching further and I would the other thing I would say for those who aren't just promoting veganism or meat reduction but are also promoting welfare reforms you don't need to have a view on with something's net positive or not to believe that we should mitigate the harm and reduce the suffering so even just moving away from trawling nets or longline fishing where a fish can be stuck on these lines or in these nets for hours slowly suffocating slowly dying toward Nets instead of far quicker which well not super exciting and appealing as a campaign slogan I think could do a huge amount to alleviate suffering no development TV and tech and you really have the console I mean what we say to the our men okay this is going to come is going to solve the problem anyway such as what extent do you think that I don't want to lie kind of thoughtful actually have an important role to play yeah I think it's a really important question I think that sometimes at conferences like these we tend to kind of become tech utopian so assume that technology will solve everything and I hope it will but I do think that it's really useful to have a diversity of approaches both because tech might not solve everything but also because tech doesn't operate in a vacuum people only want to fund clean meat research only want to get involved in clean meat research and will only want to buy clean meat if they've first been motivated to at least be concerned about the amount of meat that's being even globally and how that meat is produced one of the major barriers in graduation and corruption something that yeah definitely so the question about corruption in developing countries I think particular emerging markets where they're a major farm animal issues so this is something we don't a lot with with our grants we recently recommended in India one of the major problems as I mentioned they have quite strong legal protections on the books so strong far stronger than US federal protections for farm animals but those protections are almost uniformly unenforced and so a lot of the focus has been about how do we get them enforced and sometimes it's just because people don't even know they're on the law books or don't care about them but oftentimes it's because there's some corruption going on or you know the local chicken market is paying off the local officials and talking with a lot of the activists there have been involved in the ground for a long time what they have found most effective has been to engage at the community level with those officials enforcing the laws and the directors and obviously one person or one group can't do that but there's been a lot of effort to go around the country to meet with groups to empower grassroots groups to train local policemen and prosecutors to train other officials and to really get that local buy-in and what they've found or say they found is that typically if someone in the community goes to the local official and start telling other people hey the floor isn't being enforced it's far harder for that official to just completely ignore it if they're if the whole community's talking about it it's a lot easier if the government in Delhi is just saying hey do this and not really following up on it so I think compliance is a huge issue here it's easy to say hey we've got a law on the book I mean the same way as with the corporate pledge we've got a corporate pledge on the book but it's a whole nother thing to make sure it actually results in tangible changes for animals yes the question was about what the health and thankfully I haven't seen what the hope so I can dodge that question you were talking about the percentage of people who believe in farm animal welfare but in certain practices the intensity is their belief in animal welfare and I think you peering into like the anti-abortion movement or the second end of movement in this sort of interesting reflections on that finding briefly what instead and reflecting on the degree to which that does or doesn't influence OPD strategic thinking yeah so question about the salience of of animal welfare issues to people and I think this was really interesting conundrum where we've had polls for years in the United States saying ninety-five percent of Americans support protections for farm animals 80 percent supports stronger laws for farm animals you know 80 percent think gestation crates are unacceptable and yet we don't see any legal change at least at the federal level we've seen some of the state-level resulting from this but we typically don't see legislators highly responsive to these concerns and one possible reason is just because some of the legislators are little corrupt and they're being that they heavily paid by agribusiness and so on but I don't think that's a complete explanation I think that when you look at the polling data one of the things that really breaks down is that when you ask people well how do you think farm animals are doing currently and most of them you have a kind of response like they're like seem like they're doing all right or I don't know there aren't a lot of people who are really actively aware of how farm animals are doing similarly when you ask a survey question what do you think the average American feels about protections for farm animals and all of a sudden everyone who said I'm really concerned about farm animals say they think the average American is not very concerned about farm animals or you do a willingness to pay survey and say how much more would you pay and they say I'd pay three four or five dollars more for higher welfare foods and you look what happens in the supermarket and of course they don't so I think there's a go salience problem there in terms of how we address that I think that that is a great question for advocacy groups to be thinking about a couple of ideas I think that repeated context in terms of more investigations more ads more times when people interact with this message engage with this message I think reaching influential celebrities politicians business leaders other people who can engage with that debate and I think technology will help with that because I think it will ultimately whether it's the VR headsets out here it will provide more engaging ways people to interact with this issue and to really engage with the issue and I think we're out of time so thank you so much for coming out and I hope you have a great you had a great conference you have a great week [Applause]

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