Do you know how hard you PETA nuts have to dig to find a farm that treats their animals like shit?I, of course, countered that he or she was wrong.
Anonymous, obviously animal advocates don't have to dig very hard. It seems like every month or so a new video is released that shows people in agribusiness abusing animals.In further support of my argument, Fox News today has aired an undercover video taken at a pig farm in Pennsylvania.
An investigator for Mercy For Animals recorded the footage, which shows "employees picking up baby pigs and tossing them like footballs," during his (or her) three-month stint at the "farm" earlier this year.
The video starts by showing CVFF employees picking up baby pigs by their ears and hind legs and throwing them between employees.The employees aren't doing this out of spite or for fun; they're simply doing their jobs. But it reveals how those in agribusiness view animals -- as objects, not as living, feeling beings.
Additional scenes from the video show injured pigs going uncared for, pregnant hogs being kept in very small pens, with several portions of the video so disturbing that Fox News will not show.This is Fox News we're talking about. This company loves sensationalism, but parts of the video disturb even them.
According to Mercy For Animals, here is what the video shows:
No caring, compassionate person could watch just two minutes of that video and decide they want to continue supporting such a cruel industry.
- Workers grabbing piglets by their fragile ears or legs and throwing them across the room and slamming them into transport carts.
- Workers tattooing sows by repeatedly driving sharp metal spikes into their flesh.
- Sows with untreated rectal prolapses and deep, infected sores and scrapes from constant rubbing against the bars of their stalls.
- Workers cutting off piglets' tails with dull pliers and castrating them by ripping out their testes with their bare hands - all without anesthesia.
- Thousands of pregnant pigs confined in two-feet wide metal stalls so small that they could only take one step forward or backward and could not turn around or lie down comfortably.
- Injured, sick and runt piglets being tossed into overcrowded gassing kill carts, slowly suffocating from CO2.
- Workers firing steel rods into sows' heads, sometimes as many as four separate times, before the sows fell and died.
The pig-breeding facility, owned by Country View Family Farms, is one of the nation's largest and "operates more than 100 pig farms across Pennsylvania, Ohio and Indiana."
'Pig farm' simulation
Pfizer Animal Health has created a video game of sorts about "pig farming."
In the computer simulation "Virtual Walking the Pens," you get to be the owner -- the game calls it "caregiver" -- of your very own factory farm -- or "family farm," as those in agribusiness prefer to call them. You're in charge of 2,400 pigs from "wean to finish." (I guess that's a euphemism for "from birth to murdered.")
To make it easier for the player, 24 pigs stand in for the actual 2,400.
The first thing I noticed when I watched the demo was how much space these pigs have to move around.
In Mercy For Animals' undercover video we see females confined to gestation crates while they are pregnant. These crates, which are so small the animals can't even turn around, are standard in the industry.
Even when pigs aren't pregnant or nursing (in similarly small farrowing crates) the pigs are crowded into their pens.
But in Pfizer's game the pigs have tons of space to walk around. If an actual facility had all that empty space, the owner would buy more pigs. Empty space means untapped profit.
Pfizer's game is just another example of how those in agribusiness don't want to see how they are actually treating animals.
(Undercover video courtesy of Mercy For Animals. Photo of factory pig farm courtesy of Farm Sanctuary.)