Take Stock is an interactive documentary that projects your thoughts on animal food production.
With ethical, environmental and nutritional concerns

What Is Take Stock?

Take Stock focuses on the topic of animal food production, touching on various public questions and concerns towards the meat and dairy industries, with particular interest into factors of health, ethics and climate change, these topics are touched on throughout the site providing a discovery.

The purpose of Take Stock is to provide factual information as well as uncovering individuals opinions and profiles of those who feel passionate about this topic. This short interactive documentary should help provide you with a clearer outlook on where our food comes from, and stimulate you to consider your own thoughts on the controversial issues of animal welfare, farming and our environment.  


our environment

The topic of animal food production effects a variety of different aspects of our lives, the majority of our society rely on meat and diary as a substantial part of our diets, but how is this effecting our environment?

There are many campaigns that tell us of the importance of educating ourselves on the issues relating to our environment, concerning overuse of resources, the protection of our rainforests, global warming, and our carbon footprint. But what does all this have to do with farming animals?..

Well in many ways there are a lot of environmental consequences to consider by following a meat based diet, as animal agriculture has a strong effect on damaging our earth. For example did you know that livestock causes more pollution than the worlds entire transport system?

A strong reason why some people choose to follow a plant based diet is due to the huge impact eating meat and dairy has on polluting our planet. However, some would argue that farming benefits our climate. Global Warming can be the result of different sectors creating Greenhouse Gas emission’s polluting our environment. Some of these include industrial processes, fossil fuels, transportation fuel, agricultural bi-products and many others.

Keep scrolling for more information on this...

- 70% of all freshwater withdrawn from lakes, waterways and aquifers provides for livestock alone.
-Agricultural products account for 73% of the total water footprint.
-Those of us who eat meat cause up to seven times more greenhouse gas emmission’s someone following a vegan diet.
- 30% of the earth’s entire land surface (70% of all agricultural land) is used for rearing farmed animals.

Global Warming

Whether you label yourself as a meat eater, pescetarian, flexitarian or vegan, knowing that our environment is being affected in this manor, and the vast amount of animal products we consume each year, we should be considering what actions we can take to be able to maintain a healthy environment for all.  After all we rely on our surroundings to accommodate for our demanding lifestyle’s, without it we wouldn’t be able to continue to live comfortably in the modern conditions we do today.

As previously stated rearing Livestock means using up more land and water, and green gases produced from the use of pesticides and fertilisers on crops, and fuel/ oil for farm machinery. It does add up to a great amount of methane, carbon dioxide and other toxic gases that are detrimental to the land. 

Attacks made on farming being the main cause of our climate change are often misjudged, agriculture does effect our climate change however it isn’t all through negative impact. In response to controversial views against this industry it is argued that farming livestock can produce food in infertile and hilly areas where crops are unable to grow. Livestock can provide valuable manure to be used as a natural fertiliser to increase crop yield.

Our health

Our health and diet is yet another important factor to consider when debating whether you’re for or against the meat and dairy industries. We are a society that tends to be extremely concerned with diet with constant attacks on certain types of food and ever changing recommendations we are given to live a ‘balanced’ and healthy lifestyle. 

We are constantly being told what foods are good and what foods are bad, so much so it can now be hard to keep up with what food you should or shouldn't avoid. History shows us that meat has played a great part in our diets going back to the days of cavemen. A few notable benefits having meat and dairy in your diet are: its a good source of Protein and Calcium, helping to promote strong bones, growth and energy, it is also a good source of minerals and vitamins (particularly iron and zinc).

Potential health benefits from reducing your meat consumption are that you would be taking in less fat, the high fat content in meat can often lead to obesity if not eaten in moderation. Eating less meat can therefore be a great way of losing weight, which in turn can benefit other health aspects such as low blood pressure and lowering the risk of heart disease and diabetes.

- In the US roughly 29 million pounds of antibiotics (roughly 80% of the nation's antibiotics in total) are inserted into animal feed yearly.
- Animal waste contains disease-causing pathogens, this can be 10-100 x more concentrated than in human waste. More than

-40+ diseases can be transferred to humans through manure.
– NRDC ( Natural Resources Defence Council)  Statistics.
Eating meat and diary products has also been closely linked to increasing the risk for certain Cancers, including gastrointestinal, colorectal, breast and bowel.

Public health is also threatened with relation to large livestock farms. Much of this is down to the demand for livestock to growth at a faster rate, this is commonly done through the widespread use of antibiotics on animals. As a result his forms a rise of resistant bacteria, which in turn makes it harder for us to treat many human illnesses.

Meet The Meat eaters

Neil. 54. Firefighter. Bedfordshire

Neil’s diet has always consisted of meat, but over the years he has noticed the effect it has had on his health whilst maintaining a healthy diet for the purpose of his heavily active career..

”From growing up with an interest in agriculture, I have always seen the consumption and farming of animals as a natural process. I have family members that are vegan, and appreciate their values, but after years of eating meat and hunting, I don’t have an issue with consuming meat myself. As a firefighter I have always tried to keep fit and maintain a balanced diet,  and I believe for your diet to be balanced you should intake an appropriate amount of meat for protein purposes.”

”Recently I have began to focus more on my health, my work and aging has led to brittle joints and so I keep dairy as a source of calcium and have found fish has been great in supplying my omega 3.”
Adrian. 42.  Ardeley.  Chef

Adrian was brought up on a farm, and worked closely with animals, .

”You have to follow a balanced diet, and there are only a certain amount of nutrients and vitamins you can get from fruit and vegetables, and there are certain nutrients you can only get from eating animal fats and proteins. We have far too much meat in our diet nowadays. This never used to be the case, the variety of cuts of meat we eat have changed. Now we waste a lot of the bi-products of meat, due to the demand for certain cuts.  What people don’t understand is that the meat they are buying and considering as tender, is often an animal that has been power fed for three months to put on weight, and really there is no life in the animal at all.  At our farm we feed our animals properly to give them the best life they can.”
Sophie, 21, East Grinstead, Student.

Sophie considers her diet to be balanced, meat naturally features into her cooking regimes, though living as a student over the past few years has changed the amount of meat she would normally consume

”I eat meat firstly because I've never been brought up without it. I believe in a balanced diet and that for me means eating meat. Lastly, I just love a BBQ and Christmas dinner. I have thought about becoming a veggie for dieting reasons but I think I'd cave at the sight of a bacon sarnie.
Being a student has meant that I have never had such an unbalanced diet. I wasn't eating enough in first and second year because I simply had no money, which therefore meant I slept more due to lack of energy which consequently meant I missed meals anyway. However it was the happiest I've ever been with my body which is so so so wrong because I was underweight.

As mentioned I don't think it's healthy to be a vegetarian or vegan but I would never stop someone from doing it. As long as they are doing it for the right reasons to protect animals from cruelty rather than my silly idea of weight loss..”

Fast food

What about healthy fast food?

It can be said that we are changing the outlook on fast food so that it isn’t instantly related to poor health.  This is changing at a much faster rate in countries such as the US, where nutrient-packed combinations are conjured up at speed. Some of the most popular chains featuring throughout the states are Gracias MadrePanera Bread,  and Au Bon Pain.

Likewise in the UK companies like LEON are also building in quantity, this small London based chain has grown in size with now over 21 restaurants through London. Leon provides cooking lessons, school schemes as well as quality healthy alternatives to fast food options, that arrives just as quickly as your McDonald’s Big Mac.  Alongside this they include many more vegetarian, gluten free, nut free, dairy free and vegan options available.

McDonald’s? KFC? Nando’s?...The food that arrives in minutes and leaves no arguing over who does the washing up... so setting aside these obvious conveniences why do we question such a brilliant concept?

Well there is a reason why it is commonly referred to as ‘junk’ food, many popular fast food chains are known for serving produce with high fat content, sugary milkshakes/juices and salt sprinkled chips. Additionally they often feature negatively in the media for their poor hygiene, food poisoning and nutritional concerns. As well as this there are a handful of other serious criticisms relating to alleged animal cruelty and exploitation of employees.

But what relation does this have to our farming and the meat and dairy industries? The demand for meat such as beef and poultry found in your fast food meal has put pressure on farming and meant shortcuts have been made and we have witnessed a great increase in Factory farms. The rearing of animals in closely packed conditions, plus the use of strong antibiotics on livestock, has in turn led to animal health problems. 

Is the food we buy from fast food chains doing our bodies more harm than good?

From past nutritional surveys and documentaries on these forms of eateries it has been recognised that the food labelled as ‘healthy alternatives’ in these establishments are often no better for your health than the common burger or chicken wrap, this is usually due to the high saturated fats and sugars found in the juices, salad dressings, and processed meat. 

On the other side of the spectrum it is worth mentioning the vast amount of jobs that have been supplied as a result of these companies, some would argue that without these fast food companies providing positions for citizens world wide many people would struggle to get work. 

Fast Food Q&A

Do the companies in the industry provide truthful information about where their produce is sourced? 

Some chains have been criticised for their lack of information on where their food is sourced from. Only recently have a few leading companies in this industry willingly opened their doors to the media for a deeper look into their conditions and standards, in order to prove that they meet the desired requirements of our society. 

Please see the links below for a handful of the top fast food chains and their online F&Q’s to read more about what they have to say...
Burger King
Click on the links above to visit these famous fast food chains websites,  and see what they have to offer in terms of information and facts on their food, with  queries being made to their services, hygiene and food production ...


Farming is one of the oldest practices and over the years the rearing methods for livestock have developed greatly. With many changes being made to the ways our animals are treated, organised and raised by farmers.

Much of this is due to the mass demand for meat and diary consumption but also with the introduction of agricultural machinery and new technology speeding up farm processes; thus gaining farmers more profit for their produce. There are contrasting arguments that fight for and against meat and dairy farms. But let us not confuse the processes between factory farming and local agricultural farms such as the examples below.
CFA and Standalone )

It is often argued that factory farms involve poor hygiene, cruel animal environments and unethical conditions to be able to increase the speed for faster meat and dairy produce making onto the shop shelves. Unfortunately, the demand of animal produce has led to these serious concerns for livestock and poultry. However, past cases of animal welfare hasn’t been the only worry, but also the safety and nutritional values of the end food product.

A recent issue being the uproar of the addition of Horse meat in burgers found in popular superstores such as Tesco. When animals labelled as pets or working companions such as horses make it into our food the public reactions have been extreme, with the media taking action to highlight these concerns. Situations such as these are rare, and considered to be uncommon in the UK, however it has made us more aware to the process of the production behind the meat and dairy industry.

CHurch Farm ARdeley

“Unlike factory farms where for example hundreds of animals are packed into small spaces, where they can’t walk properly and the standards for how they are kept are minimal. This is what gives our society cheap meat that everyone can buy from supermarkets. This is something I feel is wrong and borders on animal cruelty.”

“Church farm is agrarian and our methods are traditional, where the animals come first.”

– Adrian, CFA Chef

An example of a farm attempting to revive the traditional approach to farming, using their many acres to produce field to fork livestock including every variety of animal, vegetable and fruit possible. This farm also lends the opportunity for those wanting to experience educational, social and rural care services.

Church farm is as close as it get's to the traditional form of agricultural working methods. It is a refreshing experience being set in a small community situated in the heart of the countryside where the animals roam the land free of factory environments and confined conditions.

Visiter’s can purchase fresh harvest and produce that has arrived directly from the farm, their meat is butchered on site, where it has been traditionally reared with all animals living in free range conditions. The eggs they provide come from their orchard, where hens freely roam the land and local produce can be found in the Farm Store.

Church Farm’s holds faith in ‘Agrarian Renaissance’ –
‘We see the opportunity for small and medium sized farms to be multi-faceted rural hubs with sustainable food production, direct distribution and farms redefined as places to produce food and services.’ – CFA

Field To Fork

Positive Facts About Field-to-Fork... 
– The process often prevents the overuse of packaging, with many local farms using eco-friendly materials to deliver their stock.
-It promotes stronger bonds within communities, and education on nature and agriculture.
- Typically farmers will have a direct relationship with processors to oversee the quality of food.
– Field patch-working provides habitats for wildlife, conserves fertile soil, and gives an alternative to our reliance on fossil fuels
for food delivery
One major benefit of this process is that you naturally cut out all that is involved in altering the product, for example the addition of preservatives and chemicals. Shorter time is spent between the farm and your table and therefore less likely that nutrients will be lost from the fresh food.Therefore, you are more likely to trust the nutritional quality of the food you are putting on your plate.

Also known as ‘farm-to-fork’, this refers to the different stages of farming production that means farmers produce follows a more direct route to reach your plate.

The process of getting the produce to its buyer’s is naturally a lot slower than the stock that makes it onto the supermarket shelves.

However, many people notice the food sourced from local farms – whether it be animal produce or fruit + veg harvest – is recognisably different in taste and appearance than the food bought from stores/supermarkets.

The significance of recognising this process is to educate people about the links between farmers, and their local communities, the practice of animal food-production and the food we eat.


Standalone farm is part of Letchworth Garden City’s Heritage Foundation. The animals here much like at Church Farm roam the land they are taken care of by the farmers which follow an natural agricultural method of farming. The main purpose of this farm is for families and children to visit and spend time learning about the animals, take part in the milking and feeding processes, and witnessing the births of newborn lambs, pigs and other animals situated at the farm.

Standalone is a farm that commits to the wellbeing of their animals, it is a key part of the local community that welcomes all to experience farm life, it is an opportunity to learn about the rearing of animals in this form of farming environment. 


An individual choosing to live by a vegan lifestyle is a person whose beliefs go against the exploitation of any animals. Putting the ethical concerns and welfare of animal’s first whether that be through not supporting the food industries that inflict pain on animals such as meat and dairy, avoiding cosmetics that have undergone animal testing, or choosing not to wear animal fur/skin related clothing, these are all key factors to being vegan.

Some people struggle to understand the concept of Veganism and often argue against this lifestyle. Common confusions that arise from being vegan have formed from the lack of information our society is given about animal welfare. This can cause people to form an ignorant judgement and shy away from some of the disturbing truths about the treatment of animals.

It is important that we understand the different reasons for adopting a vegan lifestyle and the benefits /concerns that follow. One argument is that it is the natures intention for us to consume meat with and a balanced diet should involve meat and dairy.

Keep Scrolling for some interesting facts and views on the topic..

Photograph: Protesting For PETA 2014 – November Vegan Month


 In the video below Amy reflects on some of her concerns towards the meat and dairy industries as well as her thoughts and opinions on veganism and animal cruelty.

Meet Amy: 30, Oregan US, Jewellery Maker.
Full time Vegan/ Feminist/ Animal Rights Activist.

Amy believes is a strong believer in fighting for equality, starting with the concerns towards the treatment of animals. Her outlook on life is that as equals everyone should have the right to live and no animal should be exploited or slaughtered for our personal gain. 

Amy has such a passionate interest in what it means to be vegan, after living this way for many years Amy has made so many changes to various aspects of her life to ensure she maintains a 100% vegan lifestyle. Due to the nature of our society in the Uk (with less than 1% of us following a vegan diet in 2012- Vegetarian Society Statistics), she has had to make some serious cut backs, yet she she has never seen this as holding her back or restricting anything she does. The more she does to help contribute to the change to vegan living, the more she feels she has accomplished something worth fighting for. 

Her recent relocation to the states has highlighted the difference in the growth and popularity of vegan food. Amy has been requested to provide more information on her views of vegan and animals being utilised for food, please take time to look at this personal video sent from Amy from the states.

“There are alternatives to animal research, there are alternatives to animal foods and there are alternatives to zoo’s and places of captivity that exist solely to exploit. Choose vegan options wherever possible and don't support these cruel industries”..

”I will never understand why, when you can choose not to eat meat, dairy and eggs and be healthier, you would choose animal products and cause suffering and pain to animals and potentially cause harm to your body. It's horrible to see people I love do this”.
-Amy, Callirrhoe Jewellery

The ‘vote Veggie’ Views

There are multiple reasons why people choose to follow a vegan/vegetarian diet and lifestyle. Here are more views from people when asked a selection of questions on their opinions on the subject.
“ As someone who works on a farm for educational activity I regularly get customers asking about the rearing of the animals. It is vital for a child to grow up knowing where their food comes from, I think schools could incorporate more education into the curriculum on the facts behind production of food.”
 Emma, 22, Hertfordshire, Farm Team Leader 

Emma has been a vegetarian for the past three years, and more recently made the steps towards becoming vegan – 

“The amount of animal produce we eat put’s such a strain on our meat industry, unnecessary amounts of animals are being slaughtered for our gain. Asides from believing in equality for all beings, I choose to be vegetarian because I love animals and feel they shouldn’t be treated any differently to us. You don’t really think about where your food comes from until you look into it and do some research, educating myself on the subject led me to being a vegetarian and never wanting to look back.”

”Jumping from being vegetarian to vegan was a struggle at first, but learning how to cook new interesting meals is something I enjoy. It’s exciting to see more vegan options becoming more popular in stores.” 
Jess, 23, Bristol, Old Vic Theatre Assistant 

Jess has been vegetarian from a young age, her diet also restricts her from eating gluten and dairy and so often finds herself choosing vegan options –

”I believe it’s inherently wrong to farm and breed an animal to kill it, purely for our own gain. If you need to hunt and kill an animal in order to survive I don’t see there is any problem with that, the issue I have is that eating meat isn’t our only option and to rear an animal from a farm to eat it isn’t ethically right.”

”Although I am not vegan, I am diary intolerant which has led me to follow a lifestyle that is very similar to a vegans. I’ve struggled at times with my diet, trying to find protein, and it can be easier to give into eating some foods such as eggs to get the right balance in my diet.”
“Looking to the future, if i were to have children I don’t feel it would be right to force my children to follow a vegetarian diet, although I myself would bring them up with the knowledge of where their food is coming from, I would give them the option to make that choice.”

Want to Have Your Say?..

Now you’ve experienced what it is Take Stock has to say on the matters we’d like you to take action. Wherever or whoever you are if you’d like to get involved in the discussions and wish to spread your own opinion or even hope to gather more information on the subject of animal food production please don’t hesitate to get in touch!

Take Stock is open to all thoughts and concerns on the various issues involved, so to have your say please fill in the contact box at the bottom of this page!


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