Yes, I think so. In almost all cases, helping humans harms farm animals. The only exception seems to be human birth control interventions, which both help humans and reduce consumption of animal products.
Almost every* farm animal raised is harmed in a way: (mostly extreme) confinement, brutality, no social life, lifespan cut short, body parts cut off without anaesthetics, artificial insemination.
The consumption of every human contributes to farm animals being raised (and therefore harmed): Most humans consume animal products, even vegans contribute to animal farming.**
To minimise farm animal suffering then, it seems like you should aim to minimise the human population.
If so, what of effective altruism towards humans? Is there a way to help humans that doesn't hurt farm animals? All of the below seem to hurt farm animals:
- Prolonging a human's life, e.g. bed net distribution (leads to more consumption and therefore animal farming)
- Improving health or wellbeing without increasing longevity, e.g. preventing blindness (increases consumption by freeing up money otherwise spent on healthcare or wellbeing)
- Economic development: increasing human wealth, e.g. funding for firms in developing countries (leads to more consumption)
If you want to minimise farm animal suffering, then the only human charity worth giving to seems, one that promotes human abortions and birth control. Am I wrong? Can you think of interventions that align human and farm animal welfare?
Note for responses: I'm not saying we should minimise farm animal suffering and not help humans. This would require you to be species-agnostic. Instead, you could say that human welfare weighs heavier and therefore outweighs suffering of farm animals. I'm merely making the factual argument that helping humans hurts farm animals.
*My argument works even if some animals aren't harmed (although it seems impossible for animal farming to work without, say, slaughter and the anguish that comes before it). It suffices that an intervention that helps humans harms leads to farming that harms some farm animals.
**Every vegan in existence consumes nonvegan products and services. For every additional human (whether vegan or not), companies will buy more leather for bus and plane seats, use animal products in glues and colours which even vegans cannot prevent. Most farms that produce vegan crops use manure and therefore reduce the cost of farming animals, which increases animal farming.