(Press Release) In the wake of a confirmed case of mad cow disease from a cow used for milk on a California dairy farm, PETA is planning to place a billboard near the Hanford testing facility where the disease was discovered that depicts a cow half-sunk in manure-laden mud next to the words "'Real Milk' Comes From Real Sick Cows. Go Vegan." PETA points out that while the California Milk Processor Board may be telling consumers that "real milk comes from cows," the truth is that California's filthy dairy factory farms are a health hazard for cows and humans.
"'Real milk' means real suffering—for cows on factory farms and for the humans who risk real illness by ingesting animal products," says PETA President Ingrid E. Newkirk. "The best way to ensure that you and your family won't get sick is to clean meat, dairy products, and eggs out of your kitchen."
The U.S. Department of Agriculture tests only a tiny fraction of all the cows killed for food for mad cow disease, so there's no telling how many cows may be infected. Cows on dairy farms are typically kept confined to hard, abrasive concrete or manure-laden dirt. They commonly suffer from udder infections, painfully swollen knees, and hoof disorders—including foot rot, ulcers, and abscesses—that can result in lameness and premature death. These crowded, filthy conditions are the perfect breeding grounds for diseases such as mastitis. The consumption of cow's milk has been linked to heart disease as well as breast and prostate cancer.
Fortified plant-based milks—such as soy, almond, hemp, or oat milks—contain high levels of essential nutrients, including calcium, vitamin D, and vitamin B12, and have none of the health risks or cruelty associated with cow's milk.