Category: Farm Animals

England: Trust A Government ? – No, I Will Take the Kick In the Teeth Thanks.

A few years ago I took part in a government consultation which aimed to move on and stop live animal exports – a campaign which I had personally been involved with for around 30 years.

In my response to the consultation I submitted around 40 pages of answers and evidence as to why there should be a ban on live animal transport.  Exports were just one part of the Animal Welfare (Kept Animals) Bill, which you can read more about below.

By scrapping the Bill now, the Conservatives are showing their true colours.  There was lots of talk on the issue by Boris when he became leader; but now the excuse is being used that Labour was ‘seeking to widen its scope’.  So what is wrong with that ? – improving animal welfare issues even more ?

I think the reality is that the Conservatives are not that concerned about this legislation; it has been running around the corridors of Whitehall for a long time now, the result being that it has not become lawful legislation.  In theory, for live exports, this does open up the chance that someone may decide to try and operate a service out of England once again.  By scrapping the Bill, we are now back in a position where transporters from Ireland use the UK as a ’land bridge’ to transport Irish livestock into Europe; something which the Bill would have stopped.

I could go on and on about this, giving you a lot more, especially as the Bill also aimed to prohibit puppy farming and puppy smuggling.  We have a General Election here in the UK in the next 18 months (or earlier);  and so this scrapping of potential legislation will NOT go down well with voters when the time comes.

And the lesson, which I think many of us voters are fully aware of, is never trust what a government says.  Lets see what the next election brings; but this is something we can remind Tory MP’s of when they come knocking on our doors asking for me and you to vote for them.



Legislation designed to protect pets, livestock and wild animals has been scrapped, the government has confirmed.

Environment minister Moark Spencer said the Animal Welfare (Kept Animals) Bill, which had almost completed its passage through the Commons, will no longer go ahead over concerns that Labour was seeking to widen its scope.

The Bill sought to tackle puppy smuggling by reducing the number of pets (dogs, cats and ferrets) that can travel under pet travel rules and see a ban on the export of live animals for slaughter and fattening.

Ministers scrap animal welfare bill designed to protect pets, livestock and wild animals | ITV News

Other policies within the Bill would have banned the keeping of primates as pets, protect livestock from dangerous and out of control dogs and ensure zoos are doing more to contribute to conservation.

Mr Spencer insisted the government remained “fully committed to delivering” on those promises but would do so by taking the measures forward individually rather than collectively.

But Labour said the move is “further proof that you can’t trust the Tories to deliver on animal welfare”.

Shadow Environment Secretary Jim McMahon added: “The government’s decision to scrap the Kept Animals Bill demonstrates that it has lost the ability to get its own legislation through Parliament.”

Battersea Dogs and Cats Home tweeted to say it was “deeply disappointed” about the Bill being withdrawn.

“This is a major setback for both animal welfare and our community of animal lovers,” it said.

Explaining why the Bill was being scrapped, Mr Spencer said: “Unfortunately this multi-issue nature means that there has been considerable scope creep.“The Bill risked being extended far beyond the original commitments in the manifesto and the action plan. “And in particular, Labour is clearly determined to play political games by widening the scope of this Bill.”

He said “enormous progress” on animal welfare has already been made with “single-issue” legislation, adding: “Therefore we will be taking forward measures in the Kept Animals Bill individually during the remainder of this Parliament.

“We remain fully committed to delivering our manifesto commitments. And this approach is now the surest and quickest way of doing so, rather than letting it be mired in political game-playing.”

Labour’s shadow Commons leader Thangam Debbonaire said the move was “shocking”.

Speaking in the Commons before the legislation was scrapped, she asked: “Is this prime minister so weak he can’t even bring himself to stand up against evil puppy smugglers? What a way to run a government.”

The Bill had already suffered long delays since it was first introduced in June 2021.

Senior director of campaigns and public affairs at Humane Society International/UK, Claire Bass, said: “The government’s decision to abandon the Kept Animals Bill is an astonishing betrayal of both animals and public trust.”

Regards Mark

EU: NEW report: current levels of animal production and consumption in the EU is proving very expensive.

Via Eurogroup for Animals.

NEW report: current levels of animal production and consumption in the EU is proving very expensive

31 May 2023

What kind of impact does industrial livestock farming really have on the planet? We commissioned a new report by the Impact Institute, ‘External costs of animal sourced food in the EU’, to explore the various problems associated with these systems to people, animals and the environment. The numbers are shocking – but the solutions are clear.

The rate at which Europeans farm and consume animal products, including meat and dairy, is getting increasingly unsustainable. The latest evidence shows that this level of production and consumption is having huge effects on global problems, including climate change and public health, along with causing suffering to millions of sentient beings each year, as welfare standards for animals are not strong or enforced enough on European factory farms – something we’re currently campaigning to change.

As it stands, the rate at which the EU produces and consumes animal-sourced products has been linked to:

Poor animal welfare standards: because the animals reared on European factory farms often face issues including illness, being trapped in cages, poor nutrition, lack of capacity to express their natural behaviours, suffering during transport, and inhumane slaughter

The antimicrobial crisis: as antibiotics are used routinely on the animals within industrial systems, who as mentioned, are more prone to falling sick due to the poor conditions in which they are raised

Non-communicable diseases: as the scale at which red meat, like beef and pork, is being eaten has been linked to cardiovascular disease, kidney disease, and cancers in people

Environmental destruction: because of the way land is used to grow feed for animals, as well as because of the air pollution that is created by some factory farming systems (for instance, the ammonia produced from breeding broiler chickens at scale). The EU is already experiencing the first impacts of climate change, including severe weather and drought – almost one fifth of which can be attributed directly to greenhouse gases from meat and dairy production.

All of these issues stemming from industrial livestock farming come with great cost. Our new report estimates that the external costs produced by the industry are nearly eight times higher than any profits made by it. Transitioning to a sustainable farming future with high animal welfare standards, more plant-based diets, and nature and climate-friendly agricultural practices in place could save the EU a lot of money, as well as help to secure a happier and healthier future for the planet. 

Our food and farming systems urgently need to change 

The report estimates that if plant-based diets, less meat consumption, and high animal welfare standards were prioritised in Europe’s food and farming systems, then there would be a reduction of 79% of the external costs related to the environment, public health, and animal welfare that the current consumption and production of animal-sourced foods causes today. Download the report ‘External costs of animal sourced food in the EU’ here, to discover its full findings.

Policymakers shouldn’t delay. Our new report provides several recommendations and insights for them to bear in mind when they write new food, farming and animal welfare-related laws – and there are some great opportunities to incorporate them in their ongoing revision to the animal welfare legislation and upcoming focus on a Framework for Sustainable Food Systems.

Food and farming systems that are truly sustainable and good for animals, people and the planet start with high animal welfare standards! Learn more about the kind of Europe we’d like to see by 2050 in our ‘future of farming’ position paper.

Regards Mark

USA: Hey, Non Vegans; What You Are ……..

With thanks as always to Stacey at Our Compass for sending this over

Regards Mark

Our Compass – Hey, nonvegans, what you’re really saying is … | Our Compass (

Hey, nonvegans, what you’re really saying is …

MAY 29, 2023

by Stacey

Source Feelin’ Vegan Instagram & Feelin’ Vegan Facebook

Veganism is a call to renounce the core practice of our culture—reducing beings to mere harvestable and abuseable commodities—and to practice, in every aspect of our lives, its opposite: mindfulness, inclusiveness, equality, and respect. – Dr. Will Tuttle

Download Your FREE Vegan PDF HERE

Order a FREE vegan kit HERE

Dairy-Free Info HERE

Take the Dairy-Free Challenge HERE

Click HERE for more Dairy-Free

Fish alternatives can be found HERE

Learn about eggs HERE

Find bacon alternatives HERE and HERE

Take PETA’s Cruelty-Free Shopping Guide along with you next time you head to the store! The handy guide will help you find humane products at a glance. Order a FREE copy HERE

Searching for Cruelty-Free Cosmetics, Personal-Care Products, Vegan Products, or more?
Click HERE to search.

Free PDF of Vegan & Cruelty-Free Products/Companies HERE

Click HERE to find out How to Wear Vegan

Want to do more than go vegan? Help others to do so! Click below for nominal, or no, fees to vegan literature that you can use to convince others that veganism is the only compassionate route to being an animal friend:


Vegan Outreach HERE

Get your FREE Anti-Speciesism Activist Kit from PETA HERE

Poland: Pig farming across Europe could look a lot different with high animal welfare standards in place.

All Photos – Pstra.

Firstly; thank you Jack for your kind comments about the site and posts.  Appreciated.

Pig farming across Europe could look a lot different with high animal welfare standards in place

To protect the health and happiness of farmed animals, as well as reach the EU’s sustainable food and farming goals, it’s critical that much fewer animals are farmed, and those that are enjoy the highest possible animal welfare standards.

We spoke to farmer Maciej, who works for the Pstra Wybiegana group in Poland, about his experiences of raising pigs whose welfare is made a priority each day.

Across Europe, millions of pigs are suffering on factory farms: where their natural instincts are stifled, their bodies are mutilated and they spend significant periods of their lives trapped in dirty, tiny cages.

It doesn’t have to be this way. In their revision to the animal welfare legislation, the European Commission must include strict, specific rules for pigs to ensure they can live satisfying and engaging lives. These assurances are the least any sentient being deserves – and there are a range of case studies across Europe that show exactly what kind of measures work to ensure pig welfare.

One such example comes from a pig farm in the heart of Poland, Pstra Wybiegana – a collaborative effort by two farms to raise pigs following extremely high animal welfare standards. We asked farmer Maciej to tell us more about their efforts to ensure their pigs lead good quality lives under their care. 

Why have you chosen to farm following high animal welfare standards?

We just feel like this is the only way humans should work with animals – we should of course all be following the highest possible animal welfare standards we can! They deserve the very best of what we can offer them.

We also think that by following these standards, we’re offering our consumers peace of mind when they buy animal products from us, as well as contributing to a more sustainable planet and better food systems.

By only selling small amounts locally of high quality animal products, we encourage our consumers to eat much fewer animal-derived products in general: which is better for public health and the environment. By operating on this scale, we’re also supporting the local economy, while at the same time putting a lot of effort into making our farm truly nature friendly. By only working with a small number of pigs we’re able to give each of them a lot of attention too, which is really gratifying.

Tell us a bit about your farm. What do you feed your pigs?

Our pigs have a diverse diet, which includes steamed potatoes, greens, grain middlings and whey. 

Potatoes give our pigs energy, greens give them fibre and vitamins, and grain middlings and whey supply proteins, vitamins and water. All of these different ingredients have real nutritional value – and what’s more, they taste great. Our pigs love their food – but we don’t overindulge them, because it’s important to their welfare that they have opportunities to forage for their own snacks in the wild, as this is one of their deeply-ingrained natural instincts. Fortunately, our variety of outdoor areas provides plenty of opportunities to do that. 

What kind of habitats can your farmed pigs access?

Our pigs are able to experience a range of different habitats and terrains, and we let them out all year round.

We think that this diversity in their environment is important, as they’re able to get a lot of benefits from being exposed to a variety of areas. As a few examples, we provide them with:

Large, grassy grounds – so our farmed pigs can enjoy digging and rooting in search of food, as well as playing in water

Runs – which have been specifically designed to help them interact with each other and enjoy themselves

Showers – where they can cool down in the summer 

Small rock areas – to stimulate their brains and give them something to bite on, which is good for their dental hygiene

Cosy indoor areas – to which they can retreat and relax in comfortable hay when they want a moment alone, or shelter from adverse weather.

How do your farmed pigs socialise?

Along with using our runs and enjoying our showers together, you’ll often see our farmed pigs moving in groups. It’s impossible for them to be lonely. From what we’ve seen, they prefer to be in herds with no more than 40 – 50 pigs, wherein they can build their own hierarchy and establish a leader. Of course, these groups are successful as well because we have such a mixture of environments for them to live in. It’s not hard for them to get some space when they need to, so they all feel relaxed and secure here.

What would you say to a farmer who’s nervous about transitioning to a higher animal welfare farming model?

I would say that the more people care about their animals’ lives, the better. Following high animal welfare standards is the only humane way to work with animals, and it’s critical we respect them. You can make a profit, too, by farming at a smaller scale – on our farm, we use the power of local connections to exist very comfortably next to the global market. 

We love higher animal welfare principles, and they work. We can see it in our pigs who are healthy, happy, and thriving, which also makes it a pleasure for us to work with them. We think an important step in the road ahead is consumer transparency. People increasingly care about animals and want to ensure their animal-derived products come from sources where high animal welfare standards are set.

In Poland, we’re trying to implement such a standard for pork called ‘Pstra Wybiegana’. It’s based on a system of digital transparency, which shows consumers that we take the best care of our pigs at every step of the production chain. Farmers and clients can both use the system to record and find out more about the origins of their pork. We believe this will be some kind of revolution in Poland, and will encourage consumers even more to think of animal welfare when they shop.

It’s critical the European Commission considers all farmed species in their revision to the animal welfare legislation, making sure to leave no animal behind

Regards Mark

Below – The current EU system for many – WRONG, WRONG, WRONG !

EU: Animal Equality secure a happy result from the PETI Committee on outlawing fast-growing broiler breeds.

Animal Equality secure a happy result from the PETI Committee on outlawing fast-growing broiler breeds

29 May 2023

Animal Equality

On May 24, the European Parliament’s PETI Committee discussed the petition submitted by Animal Equality Italy to outlaw fast-growing broiler breeds on the basis of incompatibility with EU law. MEPs and the European Commission, represented by Kirsten Vornhagen, exchanged views on this vital issue affecting the lives of billions of birds farmed in the EU.

Across Europe, countless broiler chickens are leading lives filled with suffering. To support high levels of production on factory farms, they’re bred to grow very rapidly, which means they often experience severe health problems. Our member Animal Equality brought this issue to the EU institution’s attention this week, by getting a petition in the PETI Committee of the European Parliament to ban the farming of fast-growing broilers across Europe. We’re delighted to report the results of the meeting were positive.

The Petitions Committee’s opinion marks a major step toward ending the suffering of billions of chickens throughout the European Union. Indeed, the breeding of these animals, genetically selected to suffer for the benefit of the meat industry, is an aberration contrary to any animal welfare standards. It is now necessary for the European Commission to act to prevent the unjustified exploitation of these animals from continuing any further.

– Animal Equality’s Vice President for Europe, Matteo Cupi

The animal welfare provisions are there, but they need to be respected, and it is up to the EU Commission to make sure that happens. I am really glad that there is this petition and I think it is necessary to ask the Commission whether the law or the reported practice should be changed.

– MEP Margrete Auken

It was decided the petition will be kept open, and it was further confirmed the European Commission was aware of the issues it raised. Kirsten Vornhagen from the Commission’s Animal Welfare Unit mentioned that one of the options the Commission is looking at in their impact assessment of the upcoming animal welfare legislation is a legal requirement for the use of slow-growing breeds, as recommended by EFSA. We welcome this initiative as one that has the potential to bring about immense positive change to the billions of broilers farmed in the EU. We will be closely following the developments in this space. 

It’s critical that the Commission factors in all kept animals in their ongoing revision to the EU’s animal welfare laws! Learn more here.

Regards Mark

Sweden: Djurens Rätt exposes troublesome links between mink farms and factory farming.

Djurens Rätt exposes troublesome links between mink farms and factory farming

29 May 2023

Djurens Rätt

In a new report, Djurens Rätt has revealed that the mink farms in Sweden directly contribute to the death of a minimum of 30 million fish per year, in addition to the hundreds of thousands of minks killed for their fur. Through feed production, with links to depleted seas and chicken factory farming, the report shows economic incentives between mink farms and other factory farms.

Public opinion has already turned against mink farming for fur in Sweden due to the poor living conditions for animals and cruel killing methods, as proven by the European Citizens’ Initiative Fur Free Europe which calls for an EU-wide ban on fur farming and the sale of farmed fur products. 

The new report reveals a lesser known problem; that Swedish mink farms also contribute to extensive suffering in other species and the loss of at least 30 million individual lives per year. Mink farming was also found to contribute to funding chicken factory farming, which has created economical motivation for farmers to protect the existence of fur farms. Djurens Rätt wants to see a ban on mink farms to combat the problem.

Animal welfare is evidently a part of sustainability, and it is not sustainable to breed carnivores in small wire cages in a system that also contributes to suffering in other industries. The report Djurens Rätt published is more proof that mink farms are unsustainable and need to be phased out immediately

Camilla Bergvall – President, Djurens Rätt

Key conclusions

There would be positive effects for sustainability and Sweden’s biodiversity if mink farms closed.

There are intimate economic links between mink farms and other factory farms, especially within the chicken industry and in fisheries. 

Slaughterhouse waste in Sweden is increasing with rising animal production. It is currently not used in a sustainable way.

Read the report “The troublesome links between mink farms and factory farming”.

Regards Mark

USA: Animal rights group says chickens were abused, but Tyson Foods cut ties with the farm on its own.

Animal rights group says chickens were abused, but Tyson Foods cut ties with the farm on its own

An animal rights group said Wednesday that a Virginia farm that raised chickens for Tyson Foods mistreated the animals, allowing some of them to go without feed and water at times.

But Tyson says it cut ties with the farm in January after it uncovered animal welfare issues there on its own.

The group, Animal Outlook, said it had an investigator working undercover at Jannat Farm from August to November of last year observing as 150,000 birds were raised from chicks until they were ready for slaughter. In addition to seeing chickens go without feed for up to 52 hours, the group said it documented instances of physical abuse and filthy conditions at the farm.

The Associated Press could not immediately locate a contact at the farm itself. A spokesman for Springdale, Arkansas-based Tyson, which processes 20% of U.S. beef, chicken and pork, denounced the conditions Animal Outlook documented in video and pictures shot at the farm and said the company ended its contract with the farm because it wasn’t meeting Tyson’s animal welfare standards.

“Since January 2023, no Tyson Foods birds have been placed on this farm and the farmer no longer has a contract to grow for Tyson Foods,” spokesman Derek Burleson said. “We have a longstanding commitment to the welfare, proper handling, and humane treatment and care of animals in our supply chain.”

Animal Outlook’s Executive Director Cheryl Leahy said Tyson should have known about the abuse sooner because the farm had been raising chickens for the meat producer for at least seven years, and the company had a manager overseeing operations there. Plus, Tyson was responsible for delivering the feed chickens went without for more than two days. Video shot by the group’s investigator also shows chickens being thrown and kicked by farm workers and in at least one case a worker ripped off the head of a chicken.

“There is absolutely no excuse,” Leahy said. “The day-to-day suffering of these birds is palpable in each of the videos. Still, Tyson delivered birds, year after year.”

Leahy said she believes Tyson’s decision to end its contract with this farm may have been related more to its decision to shut down a processing plant in the area this spring — not animal welfare concerns.

“It’s very clear that Tyson is an important part of the puzzle here, and the cruelty that we see in this investigation is systemic,” said Leahy, who cited two previous investigations her group has done at farms affiliated with Tyson.

The group filed a complaint with the local district attorney asking for a criminal investigation into the way the chickens were treated that was forwarded on to the state attorney general’s office.

In addition to the abuse Animal Outlook found, the group said this farm failed to follow good biosecurity practices to limit the spread of disease despite the ongoing bird flu outbreak that has prompted officials to slaughter nearly 59 million chickens and turkeys to limit the spread of that virus.

Animal Outlook said workers failed to sanitize their boots in bleach before they entered barns, and some of the buildings had openings that could allow wild animals to get inside. Experts believe bird flu is primarily spread by the droppings of wild birds as they migrate past farms.

The animal rights group said its investigator also found instances of bugs in some of the chicken feed and rats in the barns where the chickens were housed.

Animal rights group says chickens were abused, but Tyson Foods cut ties with the farm on its own | The Independent

Regards Mark

EU: New EFSA Scientific Opinions: first glimpse of scientific basis for improved welfare of dairy cows, ducks, geese, and quail.

New EFSA Scientific Opinions: first glimpse of scientific basis for improved welfare of dairy cows, ducks, geese, and quail

24 May 2023

Eurogroup welcome EFSA’s new Scientific Opinions and recommendations on dairy cows, quail, duck and geese welfare, all of whom lack species-specific protection despite millions of these animals being farmed in the EU.

The new EFSA (European Food Safety Authority) Scientific Opinions on dairy cows and ducks, geese and quail will form the basis of species-specific provisions in the EU’s upcoming revised animal welfare legislation, providing much needed protection for these overlooked species.

Welfare of ducks, geese and quail on farm

Best practices for the farming of these species are not widely disseminated yet and a common understanding of high welfare standards is lacking, hence the importance of outlining the current practices, available science and drawing recommendations for improved animal welfare outcomes. The opinion is composed of 3 parts: (1) description of husbandry systems currently used in the EU, (2) analysis of the main animal welfare consequences (restriction of movement, injuries, group stress and inability to perform comfort behaviour related to these husbandry systems) and (3) recommendations to prevent the negative welfare consequences listed in point (2).

EFSA is clear on the need to step away from cages for all farmed species, including both individual and group systems. The mandate didn’t cover force-feeding for foie gras, but EFSA still highlighted that all husbandry systems used in foie gras production should be avoided due to their severe impact on animal welfare. Space allowance should be increased and there must be possibilities for water bathing, a need all waterfowl have strongly pronounced. Outdoor access is strongly advised and if not possible, birds should have at least a covered veranda. A range of additional enrichment measures are also recommended, including enough nesting material to build nests and perches when relevant according to the needs of the species.

EFSA recognises there is still a large knowledge gap in the available scientific literature for these species. We regret that a clear recommendation on the need to have access to outdoor areas is not present in the opinion, however, we still consider the document a positive development in the journey towards better protection for ducks, geese and quail – species that have so far received insufficient attention. We are looking forward to progressive legislation that takes into account the needs of ducks, geese and quails and prioritises their welfare. 

Read EFSA’s Scientific Opinion on “Welfare of ducks, geese and quail on farm“.

Welfare of dairy cows

This Scientific Opinion is composed of 3 parts: (1) mapping and assessment of dairy farm housing systems in the EU, (2) analysis of the main animal welfare consequences (lameness, mastitis, restriction of movement, resting and comfort behaviours and metabolic diseases) and (3) assessment of possible indicators to identify potentially risky farms in term of animal welfare level.

Through the opinion the severe animal welfare consequences of tethered systems are exposed. From restriction of movement to restriction of the performance of comfort and social behaviours, this type of housing is deemed unsuitable and the necessity to end it is stated. 

Pasture access is featured as having a positive impact on movement and expression of natural behaviours as well as improving hoof health. Nevertheless, the report shows these systems have severely declined in number across the EU in the last years. We regret that there isn’t a clear statement in the report highlighting pasture based systems as the best for animal welfare (when comparing well managed systems).

We also welcome the recommendation for 9 or more m2/ per cow in indoor systems, and the need to further assess and use animal based indicators to detect potential risk farms in terms of animal welfare. 

It is time for the European Commission to take a stance for dairy cows and provide them with a good quality of life, through the revision of the animal welfare legislation. 

Read EFSA’s Scientific Opinion on “Welfare of dairy cows“.

Regards Mark

Italy: EA Expose Animal Conditions Caused By Recent Floods.

Photos from EA.

We here in Europe have all seen the terrible floods recently in some parts of Italy; here is the animal news:

Floods in Emilia-Romagna: new photos expose dead and abandoned animals on farms

28 May 2023

Essere Animali

Essere Animali documented the situation in Italy’s Emilia-Romagna region as flooding continues to impact the lives of people and animals. They discovered thousands of animals trapped and waiting for rescue.

On 19, 20 and 21 May, the Essere Animali investigation team visited farms affected by the floods in the provinces of Ravenna and Forlì-Cesena, in order to document the conditions of the animals confined in factory farms of the region. 

Emilia-Romagna is – together with Lombardy, Veneto and Piedmont – one of the regions of Italy with the largest number of reared animals and intensive structures, with more than 20 million poultry and over 1 million pigs reared per month.

The situation was dramatic and the most striking case was that of Bertinoro, where a farm with thousands of pigs was still partially flooded, with no operation underway to feed and rescue the animals. 

Piles of dead pigs – in particular one with more than 100 animals – and operations to move the dead animals outside the farm were documented.

In San Lorenzo, three sheds were found to be flooded and more than 60,000 hens had died.

Essere Animali expresses solidarity with all the people affected by this tragedy, and highlights how Italy is once again fragile and unprepared for the emergency, which affects people and animals such as those bred and confined inside factory farms, where very often there is no evacuation plan for emergencies.

Regards Mark