Sunday, March 15, 2009

Stinky Pig Farms stink the world

Pigs also known as hogs or swine have been domesticated for its meat (more popularly called pork or ham) by many, except Muslim communities. As the world population increases, the demand for ham increases, which results in increasing number of pig farms across the globe.

Smelly, stinky, slimy, disgusting, all these terms are always associated with pig farming. The fact is that animal farms are always smelly but pig farm is more than worse.

It is now a world wide issue, as far as odour and environment are concern. However, the popularity of ham as a major food source for some communities in the world has offset the stinking issue, therefore has not been well addressed internationally. In predominantly Muslim countries, in which the non-Muslim population is huge and noticeable, the issue has been kept to a minimum in order to avoid tension between religions, although unfair to the Muslims.

It is quite surprising to note that the issue was taken quite seriously by a small country like Singapore, when the government began phasing out pig farming in 1984 because of odour and environmental pollution (link). When it came to their source of import, the answer is Malaysia, Indonesia and Thailand. As a Malaysian Muslim of course I feel very disappointed. I was not aware that Malaysia has so much swine until Japanese Encephalitis (pig associated disease) erupted in 1999.

Revolutionary deodorization piping system

Deodourizing column turns slimy after certain period

Recently, I realized a revolutionary deodorization piping system has been introduced in pig farms in Japan, Korea, Taiwan and Hong Kong. To my opinion, such system will not be introduced unless pig farm odour is no longer tolerable to the public. From my perspective as a civilized people, to have such a system, it is an effort, which I can appreciate.

But from my perspective as a Muslim, I more appreciate if pig farming can be phased out totally. This is because pork is forbidden in Islam according to the text of the Qur’aan, where Allaah says (interpretation of the meaning):

“He has forbidden you only the Maytah (dead animals), and blood, and the flesh of swine…”
[al-Baqarah 2:173]

Therefore swine and its byproducts are strictly prohibited, in which such contact will require physical purification as prescribed by the religion. The stinky smell coming from pig farms is definitely offensive to Muslims due to the possible "impure" airborne produced by the swine and its surrounding.

Scientific and medical research has also proven that the pig, among all other animals, is regarded as a carrier of germs that are harmful to the human body. Do search the net, there are abundance of information available.

I know I cannot stop non-Muslims from eating pork as much as I cannot stop pig farming. Who am I to do that? But being in a society where pork is prohibited is something I highly treasure. Alhamdulellah, I'm a Muslim.

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