Gordon Campbell | Parliament TV | Parliament Today | News Video | Crime | Employers | Housing | Immigration | Legal | Local Govt. | Maori | Welfare | Unions | Youth | Search

 


Factory farm footage prompts call for Animals Commissioner

Media release
June 2014


“Shocking” footage of factory farms prompts call for Commissioner of Animals

Video footage of pig farms released on Sunday’s June 29th programme has prompted the NZ Vegetarian Society to call for the appointment of an independent Commissioner for Animals.

Footage taken by animal rights group, Farmwatch, shows an intensive factory farm where pigs live in squalid conditions, yet meat produced by this farm bears the New Zealand Pork Board’s ‘PigCare’ accreditation.

Overseen by the Ministry of Primary Industries (MPI), the New Zealand Pork Board claims that the ‘PigCare’ rating displayed on pork products allows consumers to be “confident that they are supporting high animal welfare standards”. Under this scheme, any breaches of the Animal Welfare Act are to be reported to the MPI for inspection.

Yet this accreditation was given to products produced by the farm filmed by Farmwatch, which showed pigs in overcrowded, damp, dark pens that were overrun by rats. These conditions were clearly not up to animal living standards, as demonstrated by dead pigs left to rot next to their living counterparts.

While MPI Minster Nathan Guy claims that inspection methods which determine farm’s ‘PigCare’ rating are “extremely robust”, the NZ Vegetarian Society has questioned the credibility of the scheme. Manager Stephanie Lane says the MPI is not the right body to be governing animal welfare standards.

“New Zealand is failing our pigs,” Stephanie says. “The pork industry clearly cannot be relied upon to self-regulate, and the Ministry of Primary Industries, with its obvious conflict of interest when it comes to economics versus welfare, shows no genuine commitment to enforcing animal welfare.”

The NZ Vegetarian Society is now urging the government to appoint an independent Commissioner for Animals, to ensure the protection of New Zealand’s farmed animals and develop a rating system that consumers can rely on.

While the NZ Vegetarian Society does not endorse the consumption of animals, they acknowledge that choosing pork products from independently audited, free-range brands avoids supporting the cruelty of factory farming.

Factory farm conditions are unsatisfactory for any animal, and the fact that pigs are highly intelligent and social makes this treatment even more appalling. It is commonly recognised that pigs have a cogitative ability similar to that of a three-year-old child.

Ultimately, the power to make a change lies with the consumer. Never has the adage “you are what you eat” rung more true. The NZ Vegetarian Society is encouraging consumers to avoid purchasing pork products and show that they will not accept the conditions of factory farming.

“If we buy this pork, then we hold the responsibility for it,” says Stephanie. “The message is clear. Stop the suffering, don’t support the industry – keep pork off your fork.”

- Ends -


© Scoop Media

 
 
 
 
 
Parliament Headlines | Politics Headlines | Regional Headlines

 

PARLIAMENT TODAY:

Mt Eden Prison: Serco Inquiry Extended

A two month delay to the Government investigation into prison fight clubs shows the extent of problems within the Serco circus, says Labour’s Corrections spokesperson Kelvin Davis. More>>

ALSO:

Health And Safety: Late Addition Of National Security Provisions A Concern

The New Zealand Law Society has expressed its significant concerns at the last-minute addition to the Health and Safety Reform Bill of provisions for a closed material procedure for court proceedings where national security is involved. More>>

ALSO:

Rugby And Beer: World Cup Alcohol Bill Passes

ACT MP David Seymour’s Sale and Supply of Alcohol (Extended licensing hours during Rugby World Cup) Bill completed its third reading by 99 to 21... More>>

ALSO:

Gordon Campbell: On The Flag Campaign

So far, the public has treated the government’s flag campaign with something between disinterest and disdain. Most New Zealanders have instinctively seen through the marketing hype involved. More>>

Change For 2017: Local Govt To Decide On Easter Sunday Trading

The Government is to enable local communities, through councils, to decide whether retailers can open on Easter Sunday, Workplace Relations and Safety Minister Michael Woodhouse announced. More>>

ALSO:

(And Targets Worse Than Australia's): Foresters Abandoning Emissions Trading Scheme

The Government’s gutting of the Emissions Trading Scheme has caused foresters to leave and emissions to rise, says Labour’s Climate Change spokesperson Megan Woods. More>>

ALSO:

Get More From Scoop

 

LATEST HEADLINES

 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Politics
Search Scoop  
 
 
Powered by Vodafone
NZ independent news