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ACTIVISM 101
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Chapter 6

 
Animal Numbers Raised & Killed

 
1. Summary

 

Here are estimates of the numbers of animals people eat, wear and experiment on. This is a limited selection as the kind of animals and their numbers are vast and estimates are not always available. Click the headings for more information.

 

Table 1. Estimates of the Number of Animals
People Kill Annually Worldwide
& Human Meat Consumption.
  Annual Number or Mass
Chickens 70,000,000,000
Pigs 1,200,000,000
Beef Cattle 300,000,000
Fish 132,000,000 tonnes
Meat Consumption 250,000,000 tonnes
40 kg per human
Fur-bearers Farmed mink: 30,000,000+
Farmed fox: 5,000,000+
Wild fur-bearers: millions
Experimental Animals 41,000,000 to 100,000,000



Interpreting Statistics

  • Total Counts vs. Spot Counts
    When interpreting animal statistics ask yourself whether they are about (a) all the animals alive in the year or (b) a count of all the animals alive on just one day of the year (e.g. on 1st of January or 30th June). The latter kind of count can be called a 'spot count' and often yields far fewer numbers. Sources of statistics do not always make clear which kind of figure they use.

     

  • Commercially Viable Numbers vs. Absolute Numbers
    Bear in mind when reading animal statistics whether they include (a) only commercially viable adult animals or (b) all animals - living and dead, young and old. A good example of this is chicken statistics. Half the number of chickens is not recorded on official statistics because male chicks are eliminated soon after hatching. (They are minced up and shipped in bulk to make fertilizer and pet food.) To get the real total number of chickens you must double their number to include the missing males.



     

  • Farm Animal Kill Counter
    Numbers of some food animals killed worldwide by the meat, dairy and egg industries since you opened this web page:

     
    1,249,990 chickens
    18,165 turkeys
    60,274 ducks
    34,205 pigs
    7,811 cattle
    13,533 sheep

     

     

    SummeryChickensPigsBeef
    FishConsumptionFur BearersExperimental