At the Kansas Farm Bureau conference last week, Wes Jamison led a breakout session called “Ani-men and Ani-women.” In the session, he talked about the humanizing of pets, and how this applies to animal agriculture. As disposable incomes increased over the past two decades, the amount of money poured into the pet industry has grown exponentially. Jamison explains that pets offer people the unconditional love and affection they can’t find elsewhere. They won’t divorce you, leave when they become adults or hurt your feelings. As people are putting more human emotions onto their house pets, they’ve become concerned with the disconnect between how they treat their animals and how animals raised for food are treated. Jamison said the answer is simply education. “People want permission to eat meat,” Jamison said. They’re being told by activist groups to feel guilty for eating meat and they want agriculturists to counter that message for their conscience. Jamison says by explaining that agriculture animals are raised for food and the processes they go through, consumers will at first be overwhelmed but then become more at ease with eating meat because they know where it comes from and how it’s processed. Jamison’s biggest advice was not to be afraid of the truth and to get the agriculture story out to consumers.