Looking at these images from a typical pig farm in Hawera will disgust you. Yes those torture-looking devices are to remove pig’s tails and teeth, and that is indeed a gag-inducing shopping trolley with a display of decaying piglet tails hanging on it. In those grotty conditions the farmers carry out fast, nasty surgical procedures. Places like this aren’t safe for animals or human workers. But John Key and Nathan Guy are fine with that, are you?
These recently taken photos are like something out of a murder-porn movie. This is New Zealand’s secret shame; the country is awash with shoddy, backyard house of horror-type farms. When I say typical, I’m not exaggerating; outfits like this across the country send animals to regional slaughterhouses then the meat is amalgamated for the big brands you know, stamped with an 100% New Zealand Pork “Pigcare” Accredited logo for your peace of mind and arrives neatly in your supermarket. Literally; there’s a high chance you’ve eaten meat from a place of this kind. It will have been on your plate and in your burger. The Ministry of Primary industries knows it and they’re not doing anything about it. They deem the pig “care” accreditation a success. It should be totally taken out of their hands.
I have a lot of heart for animals, I think they’re great. They have the same basic needs and wants as us; safety, warmth, affection from their companions, water, food, cleanliness, the chance to joyfully frolic and feel happy about being alive. When I see places like this and know our government is doing nothing about it I know nothing will stop me from working to see these filthy confinement industries come to an end. It disgusts me. It makes me feel ashamed of the depraved lengths humans will go to for a buck. Humans are capable of great acts and also the most despicable ones. The Ministry has failed to adequately monitor these farms (allocating a laughable 12 inspectors for land-based farms in New Zealand). They don’t give a crap.
If we had a world class animal welfare system as Nathan Guy claims, we would have a total ban on all of this intensive farming, but there would be something in legislation that explicitly prevents the existence of dingy hell holes that provide no decent life. Only there’s not; these places are deemed fit to operate. There would be huge teams of inspectors and ‘pigcare’ would mean more than “animal manages to be alive”. Of note is the fact that the SPCA – an organisation that doesn’t receive government funding – has far more inspectors and they mainly deal with companion animals!
I want dungeons like this shut down but without any adequate monitoring that’s not going to happen. First step’s first, it’s time to end all cruel, intensive factory farming practises, and to establish an independent group that are actually capable of proper monitoring. In the meantime, if you’re disgusted with what you are seeing, and these are the animals you are routinely eating and the industry you are funding, then I suggest you stop eating pig products immediately. There is only so far the ‘mmm, bacon’ credo can continue to amuse. At what point is that just a callous and revolting denial of a seriously exploitative, repulsive industry? If that’s someone’s only response that makes them a crummy human; it seems that’s the best Nathan Guy and National can say. Every type of farming sees animals as units of production rather than beings, and stopping eating animal products altogether is healthy for people, better for the environment, better on the family budget and 100% better for animals. When you buy animal products you have no idea where they come from, or how the animals were raised.
If you’re paying for pork and bacon you guarantee the continuation of this situation. I dunno how you feel about that but I tell you how I feel. I never intended on stopping eating animal products – never minded the taste – but I call bullshit on this whole thing. I have seen countless farms like that in this country. I will not pay for that. I will not help continue the industry. I boycott and I protest and I reckon more of us should. Animals in these places have no voice, they have no one looking out for their needs, keeping an eye on them or advocating for them beyond activists. It falls to us to inform the government and to drive them to set the standard. We all know this is absolutely wrong. We don’t need to eat this stuff, it’s just a want. Why should they suffer like this in order to supply New Zealanders with something we don’t even physically need?
Activists tirelessly document farms and could have a story like this in the media every week. Why should they have to? It’s time to put an end to places that shouldn’t exist on this green earth. I am not a religious person, but I have to ask, if there were a God, would God want this? Would any good government support the continuation of this? Would any good person? The answer is ‘no’. And that should mean something to all of us. National would rather let this situation drizzle on so money can be made. Labour wants to put a stop to it; that shows integrity. Profits are not the be all and end all. We have to have moral standards. Let’s be ethical and get our government to be ethical.
It would be nice to see a major supermarket agree to boycott all pig products until this dire and disgusting industry itself is curtailed. Please, do what you can.