Coronavirus and the Deadly Meat Trade
Scientists believe contact with live animals or slaughtered animals’ flesh may be the cause of the coronavirus pandemic.
COVID-19, the deadly disease caused by the new coronavirus, SARS-CoV-2, is similar to other infamous diseases caused by coronaviruses, such as severe acute respiratory syndrome (SARS) and Middle East respiratory syndrome (MERS) – all three spread from animals to humans. In the UK, COVID-19 has killed hundreds of people, and it’s estimated that hundreds of thousands have been infected.
Filthy factory farms, abattoirs, and meat markets threaten the health of every human being on the planet by providing a breeding ground for deadly diseases. The US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention states that 60% of known infectious diseases in humans are transmitted from animals.
The coronavirus pandemic is thought to have originated at a “wet market” in the city of Wuhan, China, in late 2019. According to The Guardian, “Many of [the first people] infected either worked or frequently shopped in the Huanan seafood wholesale market in the centre of the Chinese city, which also sold live and newly slaughtered animals. New and troubling viruses usually originate in animal hosts. Ebola and flu are examples.”
The latest research links the coronavirus back to bats and pangolins, both of which were being sold their for their flesh at that market. In response to the outbreak, China has shut down the trade in wild-animal meat – resulting in the closure of almost 20,000 wildlife farms – and banned its consumption. Vietnam is also taking steps to ban the illegal wildlife trade and the consumption of wild-animal flesh.
Eating Animals Is Bad for Human Health
“When you bring animals together in these unnatural situations, you have the risk of human diseases emerging.”
– Kevin Olival, disease ecologist and conservationist, EcoHealth Alliance
For years, scientists have warned that filthy farms crammed full of sick animals are breeding grounds for new, antibiotic-resistant “superbugs”. Some studies claim that by 2050, more people will be dying of such diseases than of cancer.
In addition to carrying a high risk of contamination from pathogens – including E coli, campylobacter, and salmonella, meat is laden with artery-clogging saturated fat and cholesterol and contains no fibre. The World Health Organization has designated processed meat as carcinogenic, in the same category as cigarettes.
Each person who goes vegan reduces their own risk of suffering from heart disease, obesity, cancer, strokes, hypertension, type 2 diabetes, and numerous other health concerns – and spares nearly 200 animals every year daily misery and a terrifying death.
From viruses to cancer, eating animals is deadly for us and them.
If we continue to eat animals, this coronavirus won’t be the last pandemic to threaten our survival. The best thing you can do for your own health and that of everyone else is to go vegan right now.