Debate: "Should intensive livestock farming be banned in Lithuania?"

On 20 October 2020, together with the Goethe Institute, we organised a public debate on the topic “Should intensive livestock farming be banned in Lithuania?”. The debate was part of German language days 2020 „Ö kaip öko?”, on the topic of sustainability. The event took place in the Great Hall of the Adomas Mickevičius Library of Vilnius County.

Intensive livestock farming refers to business livestock farming, where large numbers of the same species are kept in confined spaces, using processed or enriched feeds, and aiming to maximise productivity. The aim of intensive livestock farming is to maximise production at the lowest possible cost. Cattle, pigs, poultry, fish and most of the world’s food of animal origin is produced in this way. This type of livestock farming has been increasingly questioned in the world in recent years. Its critics speak of the poor and sometimes cruel conditions in which animals are kept, the negative impact on human health and the enormous impact of large corporations on the environment and climate change.

With the increasing emphasis on environmental issues, climate change and animal welfare in Lithuania, we decided to draw people’s attention to the problem of intensive livestock farming and to find out what the situation is in Lithuania. Therefore, we invited representatives of two different sides to the debate. Domantas Tracevičius, founder of the NGO “Circular Economy”, and Gabrielė Vaitkevičiūtė, head of the NGO “Tušti cages”, represented the “PRO” side. 

“On the “CONTRA” side were Darius Gudačiauskas, General Director of KG Group’s Vilnius and Kaišiadorys poultry farms, and Eimantas Pranauskas, Deputy Director General of the Association of Lithuanian Agricultural Companies. We are pleased that the debate attracted considerable public interest and encouraged the different sides of the debate to seek common dialogue. The debate was moderated by Povilas Gembickis, a member of the Council of the International Youth Debate Alumni Association.