‘I Couldn’t Look Them In The Eye’: Farmer Who Couldn’t Slaughter His Cows Turns His Farm Vegan
March 3, 2018
An English man who inherited a farm from his late father has decided to turn the farm vegan.
Jay and Katja. Photo credit: Andrew Fox / iNews
Jay Wilde, 60, spent his whole life raising cattle on a 172-acre farm in Derbyshire, England. Wilde continued to the family business after inheriting the land a few years back, but as a vegetarian, he found the process of raising animals for slaughter very difficult.
“We did [our] best to look after them, but you knew you were going to betray them,” he told iNews. “You really couldn’t look them in the eye.”
“People choose to fool themselves by saying, ‘they’re only animals, they don’t know what’s happening.’ But I’m sure they do.”
So, Jay and his wife Katja sent the majority of their 70 cattle to an animal sanctuary to live out their lives in peace.
Photo credit: Andrew Fox / iNews
The couple kept a dozen of their favorite cows to keep as pets to roam the land with their 11 cats and two dogs.
As for the farm business, Wilde plans to transform the estate into a vegetable farm that will include a restaurant and cookery school. The Wildes have launched a crowdfunding page to raise funds for the transformation.
While their plan is a financial risk, Wilde says knowing he never has to send another cow to the abattoir is a huge weight off his shoulders.
They’ve also received many heartwarming letters from people applauding their decision to give the cows away and go vegan. Some have come from as far away as Canada.
Wilde says that while he does miss the cows, he has no regrets in the decision to give them away.
“I miss the cows, however it’s nice to think of them living a nice life in a sanctuary now,” Wilde told Metro. “It just became more and more difficult taking them to slaughter. You know they have thoughts, dreams, and personalities, so being taken to be killed was a horrible experience for them too. I’m glad to have saved them from that. Giving them away was definitely the right option.”