Repeated Shooting of Bull Prompts PETA Call for Action

Bleeding Animal Was Shot in the Head Five Times—Group Says Incident Warrants Public Scrutiny, Operational Overhaul

For Immediate Release:
May 13, 2020

Contact:
Nicole Meyer 202-483-7382

Jackson County, Mo. – Following federal officials’ report documenting that a bull was shot five times while blood ran from his nose at Valley Oaks Steak Company outside Lone Jack, PETA has fired off a letter urging the owner to livestream video from the facility in order to help prevent workers from mishandling and abusing animals during slaughter.

“PETA is urging Valley Oaks Steak Company to take immediate steps, including installing publicly accessible video monitoring, to prevent animals from experiencing agonizing, prolonged deaths at its facility,” says PETA Senior Vice President Daphna Nachminovitch. “Anyone disturbed by this incident can help keep animals out of slaughterhouses in the first place by going vegan.”

PETA—whose motto reads, in part, that “animals are not ours to eat” and which opposes speciesism, a human-supremacist worldview—also asked what action Valley Oaks Steak Company has taken against the staff responsible for the botched shooting, such as reporting them to local law enforcement and reassigning them to positions that don’t involve contact with live animals.

For more information, please visit PETA.org.

PETA’s letter to Jeremy Robinson, owner of Valley Oaks Steak Company, follows.

May 13, 2020

Jeremy Robinson

Owner

Valley Oaks Steak Company

Dear Mr. Robinson,

Given the recent U.S. Department of Agriculture report concerning an incident in which a bull was shot in the head five times, including with a captive-bolt gun and a pistol—which left him bleeding from the nose—at Valley Oaks Steak Company, we ask that you immediately make changes to your operations in order to reduce animal suffering at your slaughterhouse.

For instance, you could publicly livestream video from all areas of your facility where live animals are handled. Your workers would surely take more seriously their duty to handle animals lawfully if they knew that people were watching. The world’s foremost expert on livestock welfare, Dr. Temple Grandin, writes, “Plants [t]hat are doing a good job should show what they are doing.” Members of your industry often complain that consumers today don’t understand how animals are raised and killed for food. You could shed light on this by allowing the public to observe your workers as they move countless animals—individuals who value their own lives as much as humans do—off crowded trucks in all weather extremes, attempt to stun them by shooting them in the head or electrocuting them, slash or stick their throats, and then bleed them to death.

What action, if any, have you taken against your staff referenced in the report? Have you reassigned them to jobs that don’t involve contact with live animals—such as evisceration, butchering, and packaging—and reported the involved personnel to your local law enforcement agency so that they might be investigated for possible violations of Missouri’s anti-cruelty statute?

Finally, if you want to stay in business without causing animals to suffer and die needlessly, you could switch to butchering exclusively wild deer killed in collisions with vehicles and legally salvaged by customers who wish to eat their flesh, as state law allows. Thank you for your consideration.

Sincerely,

Colin Henstock

Assistant Manager of Investigations

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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

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