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Earlier this year, The Humane Society of the United States released a graphic undercover video revealing extreme cruelty to mother pigs and their piglets inside the Wheatland, Wyo.-based Wyoming Premium Farms.
The footage – which shows downright sadistic scenes of animal abuse including mother pigs repeatedly punched and kicked in the face, piglets swung around by their back legs or kicked like soccer balls – was turned over to local authorities who announced this week that further action will be taken.
Based on HSUS’s investigation of Wyoming Premium Farms (read the full report), nine factory farm employees, including two managers, have been charged with cruelty to animals.
An animal cruelty conviction in Wyoming carries a maximum penalty of up to two years in prison and/or a $5,000 fine.
The undercover video also shined a bright light on the day-to-day miseries endured by mother pigs who are forced to spend months on end nearly immobilized inside narrow gestation crates. Unable to even turn around – these smart and social animals are treated like mere piglet-producing machines.
Due to welfare concerns, gestation crates have been banned throughout the entire European Union (effective 2013). Here in the US, nine states have either banned or are phasing them out and over 50 major food companies, including McDonald’s and Burger King, have agreed to begin getting rid of gestation crates in their supply chains. Yet, despite the writing on the wall, the US pork industry continues to use and defend this barbaric system of intensive confinement and isolation.
How can you help? Each of us can stand up for pigs every time we sit down to eat simply by leaving them, and all animals, off our plates. Start today: visit Try Veg.com.