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Thursday, May 30, 2024

Octopus Farming: How Could We Think About Factory Farming New Species in 2023?

This article is contributed by Peter Beans, a passionate animal rights advocate, who is keen on changing the world for the better through delicious vegan cooking, inspirational gardening stories and giving a voice to the voiceless.

Seaspiracy and My Octopus Teacher were two of the most popular documentaries on Netflix in 2021, and therefore, it seems quite bizarre that in 2022 we are considering intensively farming a new sentient animal – the octopus.

Octopus is generally a solitary animal, is incredibly intelligent, and exceptionally fragile. It appears that a Spanish multinational called Nueva Pescanova (NP) is set to be the first company to be selling farmed octopuses on a large scale, with it being reported that they will be selling 3,000 tonnes of these animals each year.

Unfortunately, now that people have learnt how to get octopuses to reproduce in captivity, it is likely that more of these intensive octopus aquacultures will appear. The company has said on its website they are “committed to aquaculture as a method to reduce pressure on fishing grounds and guarantee sustainable, safe, healthy and controlled resources, complementing fishing.”

This may sound like a more sustainable way of eating sea life if you conveniently forget the fact that octopuses are carnivores, and therefore, farming them for human consumption will still be putting additional pressure on fisheries and/or other intensive farming practices.

Our consumption of Octopus has steadily increased with Italy currently being the largest consumer in Europe consuming a whopping 60,000 tonnes per year. Spanish animal rights group Party For the Animals has led many protests against this proposed octopus farm, which will be located in Las Palmas in the Canary Islands.

One thing that always baffles me when coming across stories like this is how we continue to overpower and force sentient, intelligent animals into unnatural and unpleasant environments purely for our taste buds. Why not put our innovation, inspiration and creation in line with our ethics? Speaking of which, I have found two vegan calamari alternatives – Zeastar and Natures Charm. So, we really don’t need to intensively farm a new species, what we need is get rid of the preexisting factory farms.

How can you help?

Sign the petition here:


Check out Party For the Animals here:


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