Animal Ag Watch By Hannah Thompson-Weeman
Hannah Thompson-Weeman is president and CEO of the Animal Agriculture Alliance.

Animal Rights National Conference pushing for a vegan world by 2026

(The views and opinions expressed in this blog are strictly those of the author.)

The 2019 Animal Rights National Conference just wrapped up here in the DC area. As usual, this year’s conference was very focused on animal agriculture. It seems as though the activist movement’s focus on the environment will continue, with a common refrain throughout the conference being that a vegan world by 2026 is the only way to save the planet and the human race.

The conference is organized by the Farm Animal Rights Movement and supported by groups like Animal Equality, Compassion Over Killing, The Humane League and Mercy for Animals. Session titles included “Driving Institutional and Corporate Change,” “Liberating the Language of Farmed Animal Abuse,” “Abuse of Land Animals for Food,” and “Using Food Technology to End Meat Consumption.” 

Other key insights included:

  • Widespread agreement among activists that science is not about hard facts or numbers, but more about how numbers can be manipulated to support their cause, and in some extreme cases, “science” was just made-up facts and figures based on beliefs and nothing more.
  • A lot of concern about the political power of the meat, dairy and egg industry. Speakers made fun of “ag-gag laws” as well as the proposed labeling laws for plant-based meat and dairy, saying that those laws just proved that “the meat and dairy industry know that they’re on the losing side.”
  • The animal rights movement as a whole is confident that the vast majority of people can be converted to veganism because they believe public compassion for dogs, cats and other pets can and should be applied to all animals. 
  • Speakers compared the animal rights movement to other social justice campaigns that has existed (in terms of nobility and struggles), and say they can learn from each previous one. There was a lot of focus on strengthening 'the movement' as a whole.
  • Many people stressed the importance of media in spreading their message: social media, photos, video campaigns, “undercover investigations,” etc.

The Alliance will once again have a full report available soon for our members.

The Alliance issues reports from conferences like this because we believe it is critical for the meat industry (and animal agriculture) to keep an eye on the groups and individuals who are feverishly working to end our industry.

Stay tuned for further details from the conference, but one message is clear: activists are more motivated than ever to take extreme actions against animal agriculture, and we should all be prepared for them to up the ante.


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