Skip to main content

From the Marketplace to the Dinner Plate: The Economy, Theology, and Factory Farming

Abstract

Factory farming is big business. Since the "products" of factoryfarming are living, breathing, sentient creatures, particular ethical issues are raised in a market system based on efficiency, productivity, costs of production, and profit. This paper focuses on the question of weather food animals in the American market system are subjected to unnecessary pain and suffering before they make it to our dinner plates. The single most important consideration, then, is an exploration of the extent to which economic considerations render factory farming not only lucrative but also necessary under present market conditions. The concern for "unnecessary suffering" moves the paper into an exploration of the extent to which the practices and effects of factory farming raise spiritual concerns which believers ought to address.

This is a preview of subscription content, access via your institution.

References

  • Eisnitz, G.: 1997, Slaughterhouse: The Shocking Story of Greed, Neglect, and Inhumane Treatment Inside the U.S. Meat Industry (Prometheus Books, Amherst, New York).

    Google Scholar 

  • Fox, M.: 1996, Agricide: The Hidden Farm and Food Crisis That Affects Us All (Kreiger Publishing Company, Malabar Florida).

    Google Scholar 

  • Linzey, A.: Animal Theology (University of Chicago Press, Urbana and Chicago, IL).

  • Murray, R.: 1992, The Cosmic Covenant: Biblical Themes of Justice, Peace, and the Integrity of Creation (Sheed and Ward, London).

    Google Scholar 

  • Pinches, C. and J. McDaniels, eds. 1993, Good News For Animals? Christian Approaches to Animal Well-Being (Orbis Books, Maryknoll, NY).

    Google Scholar 

Download references

Author information

Authors and Affiliations

Authors

Rights and permissions

Reprints and Permissions

About this article

Cite this article

Zuzworsky, R. From the Marketplace to the Dinner Plate: The Economy, Theology, and Factory Farming. Journal of Business Ethics 29, 177–188 (2001). https://doi.org/10.1023/A:1006419715108

Download citation

  • Issue Date:

  • DOI: https://doi.org/10.1023/A:1006419715108

Keywords

  • Economic Growth
  • Ethical Issue
  • Market Condition
  • Economic Consideration
  • Food Animal