For Immediate Release:
November 16, 2023
Moira Colley 202-483-7382
Broomfield, Colo. – PETA is calling on locally based Horizon Organic to cut ties with a Texas milk supplier after a whistleblower reported extreme animal suffering and mass deaths. Today, the group also fired off a letter to the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) urging it to open an investigation into Lone Star Organic Dairy and revoke its organic qualification for any violations that it confirms. PETA was told about the following allegations of cruelty to cows at this “pasture-raised” farm:
- Most calves born at the facility are dying from untreated ailments that include diarrhea and pneumonia. Dead bodies are strewn throughout the property and sometimes left to rot for days before they’re buried.
- Multiple cows fell into a 14-foot-deep pit of liquid waste. One of the cows—filmed weakly treading in the fecal soup—could barely walk by the time she was finally extracted. She was then sold for slaughter.
- Cows were injured by barbed-wire fencing as they reached for grass and hay that had been dumped on the other side of it. Some cows escaped through inadequate fencing and were struck and killed by cars.
- Blind calves were put in a pen with electrified fencing and were repeatedly shocked by it, while blind heifers were simply left to wander the property until they died.
- Bedding provided to the cows had nails in it that injured and crippled them.
- Cows were fitted with collars that weren’t loosened as they grew so that they became embedded in the animals’ necks, causing wounds and abscesses.
To be certified organic, the USDA directs organic farmers to provide animals with appropriate conditions in order to minimize the spread of disease, to reduce their stress and potential for injury, to provide clean and dry bedding, and to keep living areas in good condition, including by frequently removing waste.
“On this so-called ‘organic’ farm, loving mother cows are reportedly forced to watch their babies die and rot in their own waste,” says PETA Senior Vice President Daphna Nachminovitch. “PETA is calling on Horizon Organic to cut ties with Lone Star Organic Dairy and urges consumers to avoid falling for meaningless buzzwords like ‘pasture-raised’ and to go vegan.”
PETA—whose motto reads, in part, that “animals are not ours to eat or abuse in any other way” and which opposes speciesism, a human-supremacist worldview—also brought the allegations to the organic certifiers responsible for visiting the facility on behalf of the USDA’s National Organic Program, requesting a new inspection.