Disabled Pigs, Mold, and Listeria Found at Whole Foods–Supplying Slaughterhouse

PETA Reveals Filth, Inhumane Handling at Final Destination for Pigs Packed Into Sheds, Denied Adequate Care at 'Happy Meat' Producer

For Immediate Release:
November 23, 2015

Sophia Charchuk 202-483-7382

Souderton, Pa. – At Leidy’s, Inc., in Souderton, pigs are slaughtered for Whole Foods—and it’s also where the U.S. Department of Agriculture’s Food Safety and Inspection Service (FSIS) documented violations of 24 more federal meat-inspection regulations in approximately 16 months. Among those violations: pigs so severely disabled they were unable to move even a few feet to reach drinking water.

PETA obtained the FSIS documents in the wake of a PETA eyewitness investigation revealing crowding, lameness, rectal prolapses, and a lack of prompt veterinary care at Sweet Stem Farm, LLC, which sends pigs to Leidy’s for slaughter and supplies Whole Foods with supposedly “humane” pork. FSIS investigators found that the floor was covered with a heavy buildup of blood, meat, and scraps of fat and that green fecal matter was found smeared on a hog carcass. A pink mold-like growth was found on every floor-to-ceiling beam in the carcass cooler, and a table used to handle pig flesh tested positive for listeria, bacteria that can cause serious infections, diarrhea, and even death.

“Pigs destined for Whole Foods’ meat cases spent their lives inside crowded sheds and died in a filthy, bloody slaughterhouse,” says PETA Executive Vice President Tracy Reiman. “PETA is calling on consumers everywhere to reject Whole Foods’ ‘humane meat’ myth and recognize that the continued exposés of wrongdoing and cruelty prove that the only humane meal is a vegan one.”

PETA—whose motto reads, in part, that “animals are not ours to eat”—also obtained FSIS records for a slaughterhouse in Hegins, Pennsylvania, where Sweet Stem Farm also sent pigs. Among other issues, this slaughterhouse was cited for ineffectively stunning a cow—a serious problem that it failed to respond to FSIS about for weeks—and leaving barrels full of skulls and fat outside the kill floor.

Following its eyewitness exposé of Sweet Stem Farm, PETA filed a lawsuit seeking an end to Whole Foods’ “humane meat” claims.

For more information, please visit PETA.org.

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 Ingrid E. Newkirk

“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

— Ingrid E. Newkirk, PETA President and co-author of Animalkind