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Without the deliberate or unnecessary imposition of pain or harm.
Common confusion: The animal-using industry, members of the general public, and even some animal advocates sometimes refer to animal products that are produced using methods that are claimed by the animal-using industry to cause less pain or torture to the animals as being "cruelty-free." Even in the hypothetical and extremely unlikely case of an animal who is treated from birth as a beloved friend until the moment he or she is killed for profit by the means of a "painless" lethal injection, it is not possible to claim that no cruelty has occurred. To have one's life ended prematurely against one's will is one of the most egregious acts of cruelty possible.
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Frequently Asked Questions
If I care about animals, but still eat animal products, isn't it more compassionate to buy "humane" animal products?
What about the middle ground? Isn't "humane" meat a sustainable, socially-responsible alternative?