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L'intensive farming or industrial aims to obtain the maximum quantity of product at the minimum cost, using the minimum space, specific industrial machinery and drugs. Most of the meat, dairy products and eggs that you buy in supermarkets are produced withintensive farming.
It is clear when we talk aboutintensive farmingwe refer to enormous numbers that, year after year, are getting bigger and bigger until reaching worrying numbers. Just think of the meat sector: in the early nineties production amounted to 170 million tons, in 1994 there was talk of 194 million and then rose to 217 million tons in 2000. The increase in meat production from intensive farming reached 297 million tons in 2011 and continues to grow today.
Traditional techniques of breeding they integrated perfectly with agriculture: animal waste was used as fertilizer and the animals themselves contributed to the work in the fields by lending labor. Today, agriculture and breeding they are two completely separate sectors: the animals have been removed from the pastures and live in huge sheds, fed with cereal flours, oilseeds, fish and meat.
L'meat industrymore efficient - which does not mean"More ethical"or "less polluting“, But only more productive - it is the US one. The US uses 157 million tons of cereals to produce only 28 million tons of meat for human consumption. The situation of us Europeans is not very different, the only difference lies in the feed thatmeat industry The EU imports a good amount from abroad.
Intensive farming and pollution
Theintensive farmingthey see a maliciousenvironmental impact. To produce just one kilogram of meat, up to 2,000 or 3,000 liters of water are required! The use of water in intensive farmingit is intended for direct consumption by livestock, for the cultivation of feed and for the removal of manure from stables.
Not just water waste, theintensive farmingthreaten to contaminate the water reserves with their sewage derived precisely from the massive use of water for the disposal of manure. L'pollutionfrom nitrates, in Europe, is now a very serious problem due for at least 50% to the presence ofintensive farming.
The waste water produced by aintensive farmingthey are highlypollutants- in Italy alone, over 10 million tons of wastewater are produced per year - mainly because they are characterized by a strong presence ofantibiotics, hormones and heavy metals artificially administered to animals, as well as numerous pathogenic microorganisms and an excess of organic matter. The difficulty of managing these sewage is tangible in numerous hydrographic basins where many plant and animal species have been led to death, in particular amphibians but also fish and damage to marine mammals.
Environmental damage caused byintensive farming
- Water pollution, caused by sewage spilled in the catchment areas.
- Acid rain, caused by ammonia released into the atmosphere by sewage.
- Excessive acidity of the soil and water, caused by acid rain.
- Eutrophication of water, the unregulated development of algae in the sea is given by the nitrogen contained in the sewage.
- Indirect environmental damage from massive feed cultivation:
- land consumption.
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