Is animal welfare important enough to you to buy cage free eggs? What about cage free pigs?
Look for the conflicts between (a) ethical food production and (b) cost of production that hinge on (c) consumer choices in the following account involving your McPork.
Ethical Food Production: A billionaire investor has reportedly called on the McDonalds fast food chain to stop buying pork from suppliers that house pigs in crates on the basis that confining pigs in crates during their pregnancy is inhumane. He also pointed out that 10 years ago McDonald's pledged to stop buying pork from suppliers that use the crates by the end of 2022.
Cost of production: McDonald's response? It's reported that McDonald's said in a statement that it cares about the health and welfare of the animals in its supply chain BUT that implementation of the pledge "is completely unfeasible". McDonald's went on to say that it would require at least 300-400 times the animals housed today in "crate-free" systems to keep its supply chain running.
The role of the consumer: In what might be viewed anywhere on the spectrum from scaremongering to financial pragmatism, McDonald's allegedly stated that purchasing only cage free pigs has "one certain outcome: a greater financial burden on customers."
Most businesses realise that if they fail to comply with the 'social license' they risk losing their customers and, as a consequence, their business.
Which brings us back to the question of 'how important is animal welfare to you'? Because at the end of the day, it's the pig that sits in the middle of the advocates and industry that rely on your consumer vote/dollar.
One more thing. Imagine if 'the law' did more than just protect animals from baseline minimums of cruelty. What if the law also mandated that the animals positive experiences were to be considered? How much of a difference would that make to pigs, chickens, cows and - as a consequence of the inseparable human-animal relationship - to you?
You can read more about 'positive animal welfare law' at www.sentientanimallaw.org