US: Animal rights video alleges abuse at hog farm supplier for Hatfield
Posted: November 17th, 2009 - 11:04am
Animal rights group Mercy For Animals has released a video alleging animal abuse at a Country View Family Farms hog facility in Fannettsburg, Penn., which supplies hogs to pork processor Hatfield Quality Meats.
An MFA employee who applied for a job at the farm wore a hidden camera while he worked inside the pig barns for three months earlier this year.
On the MFA Web site accompanying the video, the group quoted Dr. Nedim C. Buyukmihci, Emeritus Professor of Veterinary Medicine at the University of California- Davis as saying, "I can state unequivocally that the pigs in this facility suffered immensely...These people showed complete disregard for the welfare or well-being on the pigs."
"Although we believe this is an isolated incident, we cannot and will not condone mishandling of our farm animals, and corrective measures have already taken place," CVFF Veterinarian Dr. Jessica Clark said in a statement sent to Meatingplace.
A new supervisor has been put in charge of animal care on the farm while the company investigates the situation and employees are encouraged to use a hotline to the company CEO to immediately report any acts of mistreatment of our farm animals.
"The mishandling of pigs shown on the video is actually an issue that was corrected several months ago through an internal self-audit," said Clark. "Ridged re-training took place at the farms to ensure every producer of hogs to Hatfield is perfectly clear on our animal handling code of conduct and the strict animal handling requirements that we demand.
"Further, we have scheduled comprehensive and immediate re-training of team members who work directly with animals on all our farms. Part of that training is reviewing our established protocol for animal well-being and team member codes of conduct – signed by all our team members – and reiterating to all team members the disciplinary procedures in place for violations of that code.
"It is important to note that this mishandling practice was discovered through internal audits and swift action was taken to correct it, all of which happened prior to the farm knowing anything about this video," Clark added.
The National Pork Board said it condemns the abuse of any animal.