Walmart is under fire for cruelty to animals following an undercover investigation exposing shocking abuse to pigs at one of the retailers main pork suppliers. Academy Award-nominee James Cromwell, best known for his role as farmer Hoggett in Babe, joined members of Mercy For Animals to protest cruelty to pigs outside a Los Angeles Walmart. The larger-than-life protest featured a 10-foot-tall pig, bloody with sores and locked in a narrow crate and confronted the retail giant over the cruel practice of confining pregnant pigs in tiny crates on factory farms where they are unable to even turn around, lie down comfortably, or engage in other basic natural behaviors. The organization is calling on Walmart to require its pork suppliers to phase out the practice of confining pigs in narrow crates—something Kroger, Safeway, Costco, and McDonald’s have recently done.
Newly released hidden-camera footage secretly recorded at Christensen Farms, a Walmart pork supplier, reveals pregnant pigs confined for nearly their entire lives in fly-infested crates barely larger than their own bodies, pigs suffering from bloody open wounds and infections, and piglets being slammed headfirst into the ground and having their testicles ripped out and tails cut off without painkillers.
The practice of confining sensitive, intelligent, and social pigs into tiny gestation crates has been widely condemned by veterinarians and animal welfare experts, including Dr. Temple Grandin, who is recognized as the leading farmed animal welfare expert in the country.
If pork producers subjected dogs and cats to the array of standard abuses they inflict on pigs, they could be arrested and jailed on grounds of animal cruelty. Confining a pregnant pig inside a narrow gestation crate, where she is virtually immobilized, is so patently cruel that the practice has been banned in nine US states and the entire European Union.
Cromwell is a dedicated animal advocate and long-time vegan. The actor teamed up with Mercy For Animals last year to narrate the organization’s powerful film, Farm to Fridge, which gives a shocking look into the cruel treatment animals endure in the meat, dairy, and egg industries. The film can be viewed at MeatVideo.com.
“Walmart pork suppliers are guilty of horrific cruelty to animals,” says Mercy For Animals’ national campaign coordinator Phil Letten. “Pork sold in Walmart stores comes from pigs who are abused, neglected, and sentenced to lives of extreme confinement and deprivation in crates where they can’t even turn around, walk, lie down comfortably, or engage in other natural behaviors. This is blatant animal abuse that no socially responsible corporation should be supporting.”
To learn more visit WalmartCruelty.com.