Factory farming prepares for far-reaching steps in the exploitation of animals.
Farmers feel forced to do this by the advancing competition from abroad. They adopted our country's method of working years ago and because of the free market have now become a formidable domestic competitor.
The means by which more profit can be generated now is by pushing back the loss of sick animals. This means even more isolation of newborns and hygienic measures. Caesarean sections and piglet snatching (having a different sow suckle the young) yield just a little more money. The fact that this is even farther removed from the pig's natural way of life had been of no concern to the farmers for years anyway. The farmer has been past caring for a long time and is supported by all sections of society. Making big money gives status and the global market is a growth market.
The shameless defense of this with proper or improper arguments ('consumers demand it') is no longer a matter of honor, but it is a matter of the listener him- or herself, who either discovers the deceit, or rather, wants to see it -or not.
As is true for information on the internet, even more than in the past you can no longer rely on the authorities, but only on your own insights. More than in the past you have to think for yourself these days and feel and follow your intuition.
Which alternative to choose?
There is an ethical barometer on this site which gives a ruling on the ethical contents of several lifestyles, ranging from buying biological meat to becoming a vegan.
It is not a black-and-white matter. Often a half-hearted attempt at better housing fo the animals is in practice nothing but window-dressing, or making things look better than they are.
What matters is to have a discerning mind, towards yourself and others, and to make a choice that suits you. Even better when this choice turns out to be an attractive example to others. This sites takes freedom as a starting point to judge the situation of animals. Everything that increases the freedom for animals and people to behave according to their nature is being supported.
Make the alternative attractive
If you want to offer resistance against the loss of the environment and the natural way of life on farms you should not lose yourself in negative energy and you have to follow the alternative path you've entered upon. When decades ago the first vegans adopted an animal-free diet out of resistance against factory-farming, many neglected to also adopt an attractive lifestyle. Since then there has been only a limited number of followers, but Rome wasn't built in a day.
Cooking with nothing but vegetable ingredients can be healthier and tastier, but it doesn't come easy. You have to take a class or practice.
Resistance against the globalization of animal suffering also means making contact with the part of other cultures that thinks in a healthy way. Foreigners are, in principle, just as egotistical as domestic factory farmers and there are just as many right-minded people in other parts of the world. They too have to resist the temptation of exploiting animals using Western methods. They too have to consider giving up or changing age-old customs in the use of animals, when those uses lead to animal suffering.
Things will run their course
It is an amusing, paradoxical image of globalization that people who turn their backs on each other and go out into the world, meet each other again on the other side. It is a matter of trust to let people you don't agree with find out for themselves where the limits of the possibilities lie.
It is all about integrity. Integrity means to be whole, dependable, stand by your principles. A soulless way means a road leading to ruin. Ruin will be the fate of something that is falling apart.
Factory farming is a soulless way, the omens are the cattle diseases that strike the industry. Not because they are supposedly Biblical plagues, luckily we don't think that simplistically anymore these days. No, the way of the meat producer is soulless because the regenerative capacity of the industry has been removed, in order to save expenses.
While nature has a long time ago recovered from bird flu and occasional mass deaths, the population of animals in sheds has to be vaccinated again and again. They are no longer allowed to develop resistance against viruses on their own (in a natural environment).
There is much that you can do.
What matters as well is that you are honest about what you want and take your responsibility when you are asked for your opinion. When you turn away from society and no longer vote or vote for the wrong reasons, another chance to be heard is lost. Keep your head cool in the meantime -during the degeneration of cattle farming- and work to make your own lifestyle more attractive.