Being from a big city, the talk is usually a long way from anything agriculture related. Some people have never been to a farm, don’t know what a combine is, or where their food truly comes from. That, however, is the one factor that binds us all together in agriculture. We all love to eat. Seeing where our food comes from is something that I am very grateful for.

It’s easy to see a steak or a burger on a plate and not really think about how it got there. Truth is, as hard as it is to think about, that steak came from a cute little cow, that a farmer raised since it was a calf. He and his family raised that cow and then sent it off to market because they had to. Not because they wanted to. Farmers and their families have to make huge sacrifices that most others will never have to do. There is no other job where you put love and time into raising and caring for living things, ensuring that they have the best life possible to then turn around and sell them to be slaughtered for food.

You may ask yourself; why do they do this? These production animals, being chickens, cows, or pigs, are in every essence of the word, the farmer’s livelihood. Farmers are not rich by any means, so producing these animals are what they do in order to feed their families, send their kids to school, pay house payments, etc.

That is why farmers take such good care, and pride in their animals. They value them so highly. Farmers don’t get a day off. The cows need to eat whether its 80 degrees outside or -20 degrees outside and they do that because they love their animals and want them taken care of.

Going shopping in the meat department of the grocery store is a long way from the farm that the animals are raised on. However, what the farmers have done directly relates to the quality you see in that meat. Making sure animals are healthy and free of disease is a big thing that can not be overlooked by consumers. Without farmers caring for their animals so well, we would not have healthy meat to eat.

Being grateful for the animal’s sacrifice may not be something that we think about every day, but it is something cannot be forgotten. Because of these animals, we live the way we do, and we are able to care and provide for our families. Livestock farming is no easy task, it is important to remember the sacrifices being made on both ends.

Leslie Annis
Illinois State University student


  1. Beautiful photo but I’m sorry but i have to disagree with you. I think we should never sacrifice a life of an animal for money or any other reason (only an animal is only “thing” one can eat). Animals don’t belong to us and they have the same basic necessities as us – human animals: we all feel tired, we all sleep, we all feel hunger, we all feel fear, we all feel pain, we all want to pro-create, we all want to fight for our life, we all want to live. Farmed animals don’t have any choices, other than being killed e become food. Lots of families have changed their businesses and moved on from exploiting animals. It’s not easy but it’s not impossible. Animal abuse (in any form) is just wrong!! When people will realise that and start respecting the animals and its life?

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