Written by Michelle Kretzer
When pig abuser
Hormel's notorious nonfood Spam turned 75, the company decided to
celebrate its saturated fat, cholesterol, and pig abuse in a tin with a party.
Never ones to let an opportunity to share animals' side of things pass us by,
PETA sent brave "piggies" into Hormel territory.
people lured by free food and music arrived, the PETA pigs were there to greet
them and tell them why they should cease being Spammers.
eagerly pored over the food for thought provided by the pigs: vegetarian/vegan starter kits, Paul McCartney's slaughterhouse exposé "Glass Walls," and the kicker—PETA's "Think Before You Eat"
leaflets. We're betting that at
least a few folks skipped the mystery meat and headed for the crudités.
sure to check out our commemorative Spam T-shirt, available now. And help stop Spamming.
Tell Hormel to end the egregious acts of blatant
cruelty to animals—such as the beating, kicking, and sexual abuse of pigs—that
PETA documented on a Hormel supplier's farm.
Written by PETA
When PETA went public with the findings of an undercover
investigation at a pig-breeding farm that supplies Hormel in Iowa, we called on
the company to ban gestation crates—pens so small
that the pregnant sows who are confined to them can't turn around or even lie
down comfortably—and then introduced a shareholder resolution
to that effect. Less than two years later, the meat giant has announced that it
will phase out gestation crates, which
cause so much suffering, by
Among other atrocities at the Hormel supplier, PETA's investigators
saw a supervisor shove a cane into a pig's vagina and a worker slam newborn
piglets' heads against a concrete floor, leaving them squirming
in agony. Referring to a sow, one supervisor remarked to an investigator, "You gotta
beat on the bitch. Make her cry."
As a direct result of PETA's investigation, six former employees of the Hormel
charges of livestock
neglect and abuse.
How You Can Help Pigs
Anyone who brings home the bacon—or the sausage, pork chops,
or ham—is unwittingly supporting this atrocious abuse. So when PETA suggests
that the best way to help stop the suffering of pigs
and other animals raised and killed for food is to go vegan, it's no bull.
Order your free vegetarian/vegan
Written by Joe Taskel
Just how greedy are
The National Meat
is challenging a California law that requires the euthanasia of pigs who are
too weak or sick to stand when they arrive at slaughterhouses.
A lawyer representing the NMA noted that this means that many slaughterhouses
would have to euthanize up to 300 pigs every single day—a "financial impact"
that the pork industry apparently is not willing to take lying down.
The U.S. Supreme Court
will consider the case next week
in order to decide whether states have the authority to implement laws like
this one governing slaughterhouses. If the justices rule in favor of
California, the case could set a precedent that would encourage more states to
enact broader animal welfare laws for pigs
and other animals.
the meat industry need to be required by law to do the right thing? You bet it
does. Downed animals are often dragged, prodded, or bulldozed into the
slaughterhouse. PETA's investigations at pig factory farms have shown that workers
beat, kick, and bludgeon sick or injured animals with gate rods and hammers and
slam them against concrete floors. A PETA undercover investigator at a Hormel
supplier's pig-breeding factory farm in Iowa saw a supervisor kick an injured
pig as she dragged herself out of a crate and a worker laugh as the supervisor
shot her in the head with a captive-bolt gun.
Don't wait for the
courts to do the right thing. Rule in animals' favor today by adopting a
healthy vegan diet
and encouraging everyone you know to do the same.
by Heather Faraid Drennan
The meat industry thrives on the abuse of animals,
so it comes as no surprise that former pig factory-farm workers are alleging
that the management of Murphy-Brown—a subsidiary of the
world's largest pig producer, Smithfield Foods—turned a blind eye to sexual
harassment of female employees.
In a case that went before a federal jury this week,
one woman claims that female staff were groped by male coworkers, were spied on
in the shower via peepholes, and had their underwear stolen from their lockers.
The harassment allegedly went on for years despite complaints to supervisors. It is worth
noting that the men accused of the harassment—said to include putting what is
suspected to be semen on women's underwear—worked at a breeding farm where sows
were artificially inseminated, which is typically done by men armed with bags
of boar semen and tubes that they shove into pigs' reproductive tracts.
Unfortunately, PETA investigations show that failure
to discipline workers for sexual abuse seems to be standard policy at many factory farms, particularly when the
victims are animals.
Our investigators have recorded many
incidents of sexual abuse of animals, including a Hormel Foods Corp. supplier's
farm supervisor who rammed a cane into a pig's vagina; an Aviagen Turkeys, Inc.,
employee who pinned a female turkey to the ground and mimicked raping her; and a
Butterball employee who repeatedly shoved a finger into a turkey's cloaca. After
the footage was released, six of the Hormel supplier's workers
admitted guilt to charges of livestock abuse and neglect, and three Aviagen employees
were convicted after facing the first-ever felony indictments for cruelty to
farmed birds by factory-farm workers in the U.S.
You can avoid supporting the sexual abuse of both
animals and humans by choosing a vegan
diet—and urging everyone you know to do the same.
Justice has been served for the victims of Warren Jeffs—the polygamist sect leader who was sentenced to life in prison for sexually assaulting two underage girls. This is good news, but for countless other young victims of sexual abuse, there is no justice. To make this point, PETA plans to place this billboard in San Angelo, Texas:
In 30 years of investigating factory farms and slaughterhouses, PETA has repeatedly caught workers taking their issues out on animals by violently beating them, screaming at them, and, yes, sexually assaulting them.
At a Hormel supplier's farm in Iowa, for example, PETA's investigation revealed that a supervisor rammed a cane into a pig's vagina and boasted that he had thrust gate rods into pigs' anuses. A worker urged PETA's investigator to beat a pig as if she had scared away a "voluptuous little f---ing girl." The employee was also caught on video shouting to a supervisor to beat pigs and to expose his genitals to get them to move.
At a Butterball slaughterhouse, a PETA investigator saw—in addition to other horrific cruelty—a worker shove his finger into a turkey's vagina. Another worker mimed raping a bird whose legs and head he'd shackled.
At Aviagen Turkeys, Inc., in West Virginia, the "world's leading poultry breeding company," a worker was indicted for cruelty to animals after being caught on video pinning a turkey to the ground and mimicking raping her. He reportedly later told police that he'd done this to dozens of other turkeys.
We can easily shake our heads in disgust at Warren Jeffs' crimes, but if we eat meat, we may be supporting similar acts of sexual violence. Please take a stand against all sexual abuse and exploitation by ordering a free vegetarian/vegan starter kit today.
Written by Lindsay Pollard-Post
As a die-hard baseball fan (go Rockies!), I was bummed to hear that the iconic Field of Dreams has been put up for sale. But I broke out my foam finger when I heard about PETA's proposal to temporarily lease the Iowa landmark for "The Field of Nightmares: Pig Empathy Display."
Iowa is the number one pork-producing state and pigs raised for meat get more of a bum rap than Shoeless Joe Jackson. In addition to the everyday abuses that pigs suffer on factory farms, they are often harmed in other ways. For instance, an undercover investigation of a Hormel supplier in Iowa documented that workers beat pigs with rods and sexually abused them with canes.
PETA's Pig Empathy Display will teach visitors how they can stop the abuse of these smart, sweet, and adorable animals by leaving pork off their plates. Did I mention that there will also be faux-pork Riblets and stickers? Score!
We'll keep you posted. While you're waiting, please take a moment to contact Hormel and demand that the company follow PETA's nine-point policy to help stop cruelty at its suppliers' pig farms.
Written by Amy Skylark Elizabeth
The verdict inside the courtroom on Friday's People's Court was against a consignment shop that donated a fur-wearer's musty minks after they didn't sell, but outside, the show's host and legal analyst, Harvey Levin, announced his own judgment about wearing fur: "It's just cruel. … The skin ought to stay on the animals."
Caring people should always find in favor of animals by boycotting fur—or risk being found guilty of supporting an indefensible industry that profits from horrific animal suffering and slaughter. Thanks to all the warm, stylish alternatives to animal fur and skins, there's no excuse not to follow Levin's verdict: "Don't wear fur."
Written by Karin Bennett
Woot, woot—or should I say "woof, woof"?—to the California Assembly for passing a bill last week that would make it illegal for landlords to require tenants to declaw or devocalize their animal companions.
A place that requires its residents to amputate their family members' toes or cut out their vocal cords sounds more like a detainment facility than "home sweet home." But, some properties require renters to put their animal companions through these painful, debilitating, and unnecessary procedures. Let's hope that this bill clears all the remaining hurdles and gets written into law soon. Its next stop is the California Senate—so, Golden State residents, please urge your senator to save animals' toes and throats by supporting AB 2743!
Written by Lindsay Pollard-Post
Check out sexy Austrian tattoo-model Sandy P. Peng's awesome new tat.
That baby's not photoshopped, it's real. Sandy's so supportive of PETA Germany's anti-fur efforts that she sent them the pic of her "Ink, Not Mink" artwork to use as an advertisement, and she's doing not one but five anti-fur demonstrations with a PETA Germany campaigner this week. Wow! (That's German for "Wow!")
Those of you who speak German (that's most of you, right?) can read more about Sandy on PETA Germany's brand-new VeganBlog. Check it tomorrow to enjoy the photos of her as she speaks out for animals.
Sandy joins a long list of sexy celebs who've posed for PETA's and its affiliates' "Ink, Not Mink" campaigns. Take a look, and maybe even show us your tats too.
Written by Heather Moore
Shawn Matthew Lyons was the first individual ever convicted of abusing or neglecting factory-farmed pigs in Iowa, but he's no longer alone. Four other workers who were employed at the farm—a Hormel supplier at which our undercover investigation produced video footage documenting that workers beat pigs with metal rods and sexually abused them with canes—have now admitted to abusing pigs.
Of the defendants—Richard Michael Ralston, Alan Bruce Rettig, Greg William Hackler, and Jordan Michael Anderson—Ralston, Rettig, and Hackler have pleaded guilty, been convicted, and sentenced to two years in prison, which has been suspended. Anderson accepted a deferred entry of judgment allowing him to have the charges dismissed if he completes a period of good behavior. All four have all been ordered to pay fines and other fees, and they have been placed on probation for periods ranging from one to two years.
Most importantly, three of the men have been barred from working with animals for the duration of their probation. Only Anderson will be allowed to do so. Despite an assurance in October from Audubon-Manning Veterinary Clinic President Daryl Olsen, D.V.M., that Anderson “has been suspended from working with livestock pending the outcome of the charges,” a whistleblower told us that Anderson is currently employed at a hog-confinement facility that Dr. Olsen reportedly owns. Dr. Olsen has not answered our inquiry regarding Mr. Anderson. If you would like to ask him to confirm that his company does not pay admitted animal abusers like Anderson to work with live animals, please contact him here.
Pork magazine called our investigation footage a "wake-up call" for the pork industry. We hope that these convictions serve not only as another wake-up call but also as a lesson to anyone working in this innately cruel industry: Neither the courts nor the public have a stomach for such malicious cruelty to farmed animals.
Written by Shawna Flavell
you have a general question for PETA and would like a response, please e-mail Info@peta.org. If you need to report cruelty to
an animal, please click
here. If you are reporting an animal in imminent danger and know where to find the
animal and if the abuse is taking place right now, please call your local
police department. If the police are unresponsive, please call PETA
immediately at 757-622-7382 and press 2.
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Almost all of us grew up eating meat, wearing leather, and going to circuses and zoos. We never considered the impact of these actions on the animals involved. For whatever reason, you are now asking the question: Why should animals have rights? Read more.