From a bookreview in The Guardian:
These days, most big animals live on industrial farms. We imagine that our planet is populated by lions, elephants, whales and penguins. That may be true of the National Geographic channel, Disney movies and children’s fairytales, but it is no longer true of the real world. The world contains 40,000 lions but, by way of contrast, there are around 1 billion domesticated pigs; 500,000 elephants and 1.5 billion domesticated cows; 50 million penguins and 20 billion chickens.
In 2009, there were 1.6 billion wild birds in Europe, counting all species together. That same year, the European meat and egg industry raised 1.9 billion chickens. Altogether, the domesticated animals of the world weigh about 700m tonnes, compared with 300m tonnes for humans, and fewer than 100m tonnes for large wild animals.
The number of animals slaughtered to feed people since you opened this page
Source: Action for Animals
Worldwide each year about 75 billion farm animals are kept for their meat, milk or eggs. Estimates suggest that 70% of them, about 50 billion animals remain their short life in cramped cages or dark pens of the cattle industry.
- 42 billion broilers
- 4.1 billion laying hens
- 770 million pigs
- 5 million cows
In addition to the mammals on land, 2.7 trillion (1018) animals are fished from the sea each year. Around 75% of the worldwide fishing areas are exploited or are already exhausted.
For images of the lives of these animals (and other species) before they were slain, visit the website of photographer Jo-Anne McArthur.
Does this insight paralyze you? Please realize that the solution is simple, and not dependent of other people. You do not have to do anything other than to stop to contribute to animal suffering.