Grocery Chain Hy-Vee Makes the Right Call, Ends ‘Humane Meat’ Claims

Published by Katherine Sullivan.

After learning from PETA that animals on so-called “humane” farms are often tightly confined, mutilated, and slaughtered while fully conscious, grocery chain Hy-Vee—which operates 245 stores in eight states—has removed the word “humane” from its meat marketing materials.

The only label indicating truly humane food is “vegan,” so Hy-Vee did the right thing by agreeing not to mislead well-intentioned consumers with the “humane meat” myth. PETA encourages shoppers to stick to vegan meals and speak out against any brand that labels a tormented animal’s flesh as “humane.”

Animals on farms selling “humane” meat are typically mutilated without painkillers, artificially inseminated …

Jo-Anne McArthur, spain, dairy and veal farm, cows, artificial insemination© Jo-Anne McArthur / Animal Equality
This is an image of an “organic” farm. Cows are held in place with restraints and artificially inseminated, and then the process starts again. When their bodies give out, they’re sent to slaughter.


… kept in crowded conditions without access to sunlight or fresh air …

Jo-Anne McArthur, spain, free-range chicken farm© Jo-Anne McArthur / Animal Equality
This is an image of a “free-range, organic, family-run” chicken farm. Not exactly the bucolic, rolling green hills that the drawings on meat labels normally depict.


… separated from their offspring …

Jo-Anne McArthur, spain, dairy and veal farm, calf, calf hutch© Jo-Anne McArthur / Animal Equality
At an “organic, family-run” dairy farm, newborn calves lie alone in isolated crates. The farm sells many of them for veal.


… and shipped in the freezing cold or suffocating heat to the very same slaughterhouses used by every other meat producer.

Pigs on truck headed to slaughterhouse©

There, they’re hung upside down and their throats are cut in full view of one another, often while they’re still conscious and struggling to escape.

‘Humane Meat’ … Are You Buying It?

Some companies think that with a few reassuring words and a pretty picture of a farm, the American consumer can easily be fooled into believing that no animals were harmed in the production of the flesh beneath the plastic. But we know better. We know that exploiting and killing animals to eat their body parts can never be humane. The only truly humane meal is a vegan one.

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 Ingrid E. Newkirk

“Almost all of us grew up eating meat, wearing leather, and going to circuses and zoos. We never considered the impact of these actions on the animals involved. For whatever reason, you are now asking the question: Why should animals have rights?” READ MORE

— Ingrid E. Newkirk, PETA President and co-author of Animalkind