Day 17

"I just don't think about it." VINE started out as a chicken sanctuary surrounded by factory farms, and whenever we talked to workers in the local poultry industry, that phrase would be said again and again. Work at slaughterhouses and factory farms is inherently dangerous and demoralizing, and these harms are made more injurious by lack of rights.

Just not thinking about it is also what most people who eat animal products do to feel OK about themselves. But that's a dangerous habit of mind that can lead to thoughtlessness in other areas. In contrast, really thinking about where your food is coming from three times a day is good practice at becoming more mindful about everything.

Learn more about the struggles of workers at slaughterhouses and factory farms from Food Empowerment Project. In reading about factory farms, remember that most cows exploited for their milk are confined on concrete with little or no access to outdoors. In reading about slaughterhouses, remember that cows from dairy farms also are slaughtered.

Further Inspiration

To be both informed and inspired, read this interview with the late Virgil Butler, who was a great friend to the sanctuary, talking about his experiences as a former chicken catcher and slaughterhouse worker. In reading about Virgil's experiences, remember that hens used for eggs also are slaughtered.

Shout Out

Farm workers who sow, tend, and harvest vegetables, fruit, and root crops also face many challenges. That's why we join Food Empowerment Project in calling for all vegans to support the struggles of farm workers for fair wages, safe working conditions, and freedom from harmful pesticides and to always remember the people behind your food. Each year, FEP runs a school supply drive for the children of farmworkers.

Recipe of the Day

For a delicious and satisfying dish that is quick and easy to pull together, try Mexican Potatoes from FEP's Vegan Mexican Food project.

Other Ways to Engage

Join the V2V Forum

Share your experiences with other challenge participants and get expert advice from longstanding vegans here.

Catch Up on Briefings

You can find and discuss any daily briefing you skipped or missed here.

Follow Us on Social Media

Get to meet the members of our multi-species community. Follow us on Facebook, Instagram, and Twitter for an inside look into the daily adventures at the sanctuary.

Join our Book Club

The VINE Book Club meets monthly to discuss books of interest to animal advocates who work within an ecological awareness of the linkages between animal exploitation and other forms of injustice. Learn more here.

Upcoming Events

Stay in the loop! We host many in-person and virtual events year-round. Make sure you don't miss out! Check them out here.


We want to do so much more than we have been able to, but to do that, WE NEED YOU. Find out ways to get involved, and sign up here.

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