US Documentary Challenges Welfare Perceptions

MANHATTAN, US - On the heels of last week's Proposition 2 vote in California to end the practice of confining certain animals raised for food comes a Kansas-produced television documentary that showcases the care, empathy and human compassion involved in raising farm animals.
calendar icon 12 November 2008
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Kansas Farm Bureau's latest in a series of award-winning television documentaries, "The Care & Feeding of Farm Animals," features men, women and families of Kansas who raise farm animals for food. The film delves into the heritage of livestock production in Kansas and examines the economic impact associated with a growing negative perception related to the welfare of farm animals.

"As people shift away from the farm, geographically and culturally, there's a void - and perceptions are filling it," said Mike Matson, Manhattan, who wrote, produced and directed the documentary. "The ways consumers think about and react to their food and the animals it comes from impact everything associated with it, starting with the farmer who raises the animal."

"The Care & Feeding of Farm Animals," illustrates how Kansas livestock producers are pushing back against the perception by getting off the farm and out of their comfort zone to share their passion for raising healthy food animals.

"Consumers want to know more about the people who produce their food," said Matson. "No one tells this story more effectively than those who live it 24/7."

The documentary will debut to a statewide television audience on Kansas public TV stations (KPTS, Wichita; KTWU, Topeka and the Smoky Hills public television stations in western Kansas) Monday, Nov. 17 at 9:30 p.m. (CDT).

The stations will re-air the documentary a number of times throughout the fall. Check your local listings for encore dates/times. The documentary film features original music from True North, an alternative country/roots rock band featuring a half-dozen musicians who grew up on Kansas farms, ranches and in rural communities.

It's the story of a traditional Kansas culture of care and compassion that has not been widely told.

Kansas Farm Bureau represents grassroots agriculture. Established in 1919, this non-profit advocacy organization supports farm families who earn their living in a changing industry.

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