Day: January 18, 2022

Spanish company wants to breed octopuses in aquaculture

From 2023, 3000 tons of octopus meat could be produced annually on the Canary Island of Gran Canaria.
Science and animal welfare protest. Because octopuses are highly intelligent and sensitive

Octopuses are amazing creatures.
With their eight arms and sac-like body, they appear alien – and yet they are more similar to us humans than most vertebrates: they have an excellent memory, they plan, deceive, play.
They manage to open child-resistant screw caps.
They even have distinct personalities, being shy, curious, or reckless.
They have likes or dislikes of their own kind as well as people.

And something else makes octopuses special: they are difficult to reproduce in captivity. But that’s exactly what a Spanish company has managed to do.

According to the Nueva Pescanova Group, octopuses could be bred for several generations in their own aquaculture for the first time.
In the summer of 2022, the first animals should come onto the market.

President of the Las Palmas Port Authority port Luis Ibarra said “it was the biggest private Investment in the history of the port which will create 450 jobs and make the Las Palmas Harbour-La Luz- the world`s biggest exporter of octopus”

From 2023, 3,000 tons of octopus meat (!!) are to be produced annually on the Spanish Canary Island of Gran Canaria, for example for popular dishes such as “Pulpo a la Gallega”.
The company is investing around 65 million euros in the project. The targeted main customer countries are Spain, Italy, Greece and Japan.

Does aquaculture relieve the marine ecosystems?

It is estimated that around 350,000 tons of octopus are caught and processed worldwide every year – about ten times as much as in 1950.
The Nueva Pescanova Group argues that the number of wild catches can be reduced by around ten percent with production in aquaculture.
Whether the pressure on wild populations caused by factory farming will actually decrease is anything but clear.

Biologists and animal rights activists warn – on the contrary – that aquaculture is increasing the pressure on marine ecosystems. Because many edible fish are – like octopuses – carnivores.
Already today, around a third of the global catches are fed to animals, around half of them in aquaculture.

According to critics, it is also certain that octopuses cannot be kept anywhere near species-appropriate in aquaculture.
Unlike fish, the intelligent octopuses in their water tanks would be aware of their hopeless situation.
And they are loners.

It seems unlikely that this elementary need of the animals is taken into account in mass aquaculture.
Especially since there are hardly any legal regulations for keeping them: Most national and EU keeping requirements relate to vertebrates.

Housing conditions and method of killing: unknown

It is also to be feared that speed is more important than avoiding stress and pain when slaughtering on assembly lines.
When asked by the British BBC, the company declined to comment on the husbandry of the octopuses, the origin of the food or the killing method.

As early as 2019, scientists had declared that breeding octopuses in captivity for food purposes was a “terrible idea”.
And not only from an environmental point of view, but also from a moral point of view.

The company is yet to reveal exactly what the octopus tanks look like, what “toys” they claim to use for stimulation and what source of food they will rely on
On paper, however, the claims are noble.
According to the authors, keeping octopuses in aquaculture with high animal welfare standards is “impossible”.

The clever cephalopods already enjoy better legal protection in the United Kingdom than in Spain.
Experts there had viewed more than 300 scientific studies – and had come to the conclusion that octopuses were “sentient beings”.
There is “strong scientific evidence” that animals can feel joy, but also pain, stress and despair.
The scientific assessment led to the inclusion of the animals in the Animal Welfare Bill.

And I mean…In a year when many countries have passed laws protecting species they believe are sentient beings, the news that the world’s first octopus farm has opened in the Canary Islands have understandably been met with shock, disgust and outrage around the world for every compassionate and civilized human being.

For the thousands of these animals will be bred and imprisoned in cruel, prison-like conditions.
Just like any animal in factory farming.

Known as the “Einsteins of the sea”, octopuses have large, complex brains.
In fact, they have nine: one central brain between the eyes and separate mini-brains at the base of each tentacle – meaning that each arm, quite literally, has a mind of its own.
They can navigate their way through mazes and remember the solutions.

They are solitary, territorial animals, as curious as humans, and cramming them into barren communal tanks or netted pools, with little or no stimulation – as is common of all factory farm systems – would condemn them to a miserable existence.
All agree that octopuses would suffer dreadfully in such conditions.

To make matters worse, there is currently no legislation in Spain, or elsewhere, to protect octopus welfare on farms or during their slaughter.

In reality, the farm – close to Las Palmas in Gran Canaria – means countless animals will spend their lives vulnerable to pain and suffering, and endure agonising deaths.

The solution, of course, is to stop eating octopuses – and, indeed, all animals.
Even if they’re not farmed, octopuses captured for food still suffer: they are often speared or burned with caustic chemicals to force them out of specialised traps.
Many are snared in massive, indiscriminate trawl nets.
On deck, if they’re not left to suffocate in agony, they’re clubbed, stabbed, or butchered alive.

To allow the world’s very first octopus factory farm to open, when we know and understand the impact it would have on these intelligent, feeling beings, would be a monstrous act and a shame on the Canary Islands government.

We must act quickly to prevent this farm from being built.
As soon as we have a petition about this, we will inform you further.


My best regards to all, Venus

Scotland: Butchers Encourages Shoppers To ‘End The Violence’ Against Plants By Eating Meat.

The sign takes aim at vegetarians, joking that they “kill’ plants. Credit: Jakub Dragon / Facebook

A butchers in the UK has caused a stir online after stating that vegetarians kill thousands of “innocent plants”

Amarketing strategy implemented by a butchers shop in Edinburgh in the UK has raised eyebrows, with some branding it as “ignorant.”

W.M Christie, a family butchers established in 1889, placed a chalkboard sign in its store in Bruntsfield that took aim at vegetarians. 

“Everyday thousands of innocent plants are killed by vegetarians,” the sign read. “Help end the violence. Eat meat.”

An amused shopper posted a photo of the sign online, causing a stir among animal rights advocates. 

“Jeez, the ignorance is astonishing. Plants are not sentient and exist in synergy with humans and animals as a food source,” Kevin Thomson commented, per Edinburgh Live

“You just can’t say I murdered a carrot. People will cling to all sorts of nonsense to justify murdering animals… animals that have exactly the same fundamental wishes as us – to be happy, safe, and free from suffering.”

Other social media users pointed out that animals bred for human consumption also require the “killing” of crops. 

In fact, only around half (55 percent) of the world’s crop calories feed people directly. And for some crops, a vast majority is fed to livestock, not people. For instance, 77 percent of the world’s soy is fed to livestock. 

Furthermore, calorically speaking, the system could be considered inefficient, given that it takes 100 calories of grain to produce just 12 calories of chicken. The conversion is even more dire for other animal-based foods; 100 calories of crops produce just three calories of beef. 

‘A simple joke’

Willie Christie, who runs the butchers alongside his brother, defended the advertisement. “As it’s Veganuary, isn’t it fitting it could be Meatanuary too? It wasn’t malicious in any way, just a simple joke and banter,” he said to Edinburgh Live.

“People have taken it wrongly. we are surrounded with people telling us to go vegan and vegetarian, yet my business is a butchers. We sell meat and I’m promoting my business.

“Everyone is entitled to their own opinion and I respect that, I’m just expressing mine. And it seems to have worked, given the attention my butchers has now received.”

Pro-meat campaigning

W.M Christie isn’t the only meat-centered company poking fun at the Veganuary campaign – the month-long pledge to go vegan for January. 

This month, a coalition of animal agriculturalists are pushing their own take on Veganuary. The Regenuary campaign encourages shoppers to seek out meat and dairy produced by regenerative farming methods.

The campaign notes that vegans and vegetarians can still participate by being more mindful about where their food is sourced. However, the Ethical Butcher website notes that Regenuary was launched as “a response to Veganuary,” and was borne out of “frustration” at the “misleading messages around veganism and its effect on the environment.”

Tangentially, in November, an anti-vegan lifestyle brand launched to allow meat-eaters to declare they are “proud to not be a vegan.”

The company sells tongue-in-cheek merchandise, such as mugs with the statement: “Doubled my meat intake to cancel out someone who turned vegan.”

“We’re here to stand up for the vast majority of people who eat meat,” the brand, called Not Vegan Friendly, says on its website.

“If you’ll excuse the pun, but a lot of people are fed up with vegans ramming their beliefs down our throats so it’s time to speak out in favour of our different and perfectly valid choice to eat meat.”Butchers Encourages Shoppers To ‘End The Violence’ Against Plants By Eating Meat

Regards Mark

Butchers Encourages Shoppers To ‘End The Violence’ Against Plants By Eating Meat – Plant Based News

USA: Hunters Slaughter 20 Gray Wolves At Yellowstone National Park.

20 gray wolves killed in Yellowstone National Park by hunters
Hunters use bait to lure the wolves into traps Credit: Adobe

The woodland stretches into Montana where hunting is legal and officials fear more killings are to come

Hunters killed 20 gray wolves in Yellowstone National Park, US, making it the bloodiest season yet.

According to reports, the illegal killings took place over a period of three months this winter. The deaths mark the most since the animals were reintroduced to the region more than two decades ago.

One pack is now considered “eliminated,” The Washington Post reports. Now, less than one hundred remain in the 3,500 square mile park, which spans across Wyoming and into Montana and Idaho.

Hunting is prohibited at Yellowstone, yet park officials fear more bouts are to come as there are months to go in Montana’s hunting season


Wolves killed by hunters in Yellowstone National Park

Further to the story, The Washington Post reveals that the park’s superintendent is concerned about wolves being killed.

Cam Sholly reportedly said that an “extraordinary number” of Yellowstone wolves had already been killed. And, that Montana’s governor Greg Gianforte should do more to prevent it.

But Gianforte stated that any wolf entering the Montana state lines may be “harvested” under law, the news outlet adds.

Here, hunting is legal and poachers can use bait to lure animals into leghold traps.

A spokesperson for Yellowstone National Park, Morgan Warthin, told The Washington Post: “Allowances for trapping and especially baiting are a major concern, especially if these tactics lure wolves out of the park.”

Regards Mark

Hunters Slaughter 20 Gray Wolves At Yellowstone National Park (

EU: Time is running out to end the European Union’s shark fin trade.

17 January 2022

EU citizens have until 31 January 2022 to collect the final 100,000 votes out of the 1 million needed for a successful EU Citizens’ Initiative to demand the end of the shark fin trade in the EU.

Shark finning refers to cutting off the fins of live sharks on board a fishing boat and throwing the shark overboard to die in the water.

While shark finning is prohibited on EU vessels and in EU waters, and sharks must be caught with fins attached to their bodies, the EU is one of the world’s largest exporters of fins and a significant transit area for the global fin trade.

The EU exports approximately 3,500 tonnes of fins per year, with a total value of around 52 million euros. 73 million sharks are slaughtered each year for this purpose.

So far, 900,000 EU citizens call to “end the trade of fins in the EU including the import, export and transit of fins other than if naturally attached to the animal’s body”. Should they reach 1 million by 31 January, the European Commission could then decide to propose a new regulation to achieve this goal.

Sign the European Citizens’ Initiative here.

Regards Mark