Most people believe that a "naturally raised" label implies animals have access to sunshine, fresh air, freedom of movement and the ability to perform, um, you know, natural behaviors. Yet the United States Department of Agriculture (USDA) recently allowed companies to slap a "naturally raised" label on meat and meat products that come from animals whose upbringing was anything but. For instance, the labeling is being applied to cows and pigs being raised in cramped crates -- unable to engage in "natural" behaviors such as grazing and rooting for food, taking mud baths, and raising their young.
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Farm Sanctuary, the nation's leading farm animal protection organization, is in the process of collecting 10,000 signatures on a "Truth Behind Labels" petition that will be sent to the USDA. The group is currently at 9,556 signatures -- 96% of the way there. If you'd like to let the USDA know that you disapprove of their deceptive claims, go ahead and sign this petition.