Breaking News: Animal Cruelty Charges Filed Against Workers at DiGiorno Cheese Supplier

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” This heinous cruelty & horrific torture must be stopped; no animal should be treated this way. They are sentient beings capable of feelings just like humans! Do meat eaters really want to eat meat from animals that have been appallingly abused! The public have a right to know how the animals they intend to eat, are treated!

Those farms hoping to get Ag-Gag laws are doing so; because they don’t want the public to learn the truth, about the horrific violence & abuse used on their animals; once the public learn of this, they will think twice about buying their products. The people have the power to stop this by raising their voices & demanding better conditions for these poor neglected, abused & heinously treated animals; please use your voice to end this!! Please sign the petition below or at http://www.sliceofcruelty.com/

February 13, 2014 – By Matt Rice

Four workers at a dairy farm that was supplying cheese to DiGiorno Pizza are being charged with a total of 11 counts of criminal animal cruelty. Each count is punishable by up to nine months in jail and $10,000 in fines.

The charges stem from shocking animal abuse captured on a hidden-camera video by Mercy For Animals at a Wisconsin dairy farm late last year. Abelardo Jaimes, Crescencio Pineda, Lucia Martinez, and Misael Monge-Minero were charged with violating the state’s animal cruelty statute after they were caught on video viciously kicking, beating, whipping, dragging and stabbing cows at Wiese Brothers Farms in Greenleaf, Wisconsin.

MFA praises the Brown County Sheriff’s Department and district attorney’s office for taking swift and decisive action in pursuing justice for these abused and exploited animals.

Mercy For Animals is calling on Nestlé to adopt meaningful animal welfare guidelines, including zero tolerance for kicking, punching and shocking cows; requiring suppliers to prohibit painful and unnecessary mutilations of animals; and requiring suppliers to provide a safe, clean and sanitary environment for cattle. Tens of thousands of consumers have signed a petition at SliceOfCruelty.com, urging Nestlé to implement such policies, since the investigation’s release.

“These criminal charges should be a wake-up call that heartbreaking animal abuse runs rampant at DiGiorno cheese suppliers. Swift action must be taken to end this unspeakable cruelty. Nestlé has the power and responsibility to implement meaningful policies to end some of the worst forms of animal abuse in the dairy industry,” said MFA’s executive director, Nathan Runkle. “No socially responsible corporation should support dairy operations that torture animals.” 

Please take action now to stop this type of blatant animal abuse by signing the petition aSliceOfCruelty.com.

After signing the petition, consider making changes in your own lifestyle to help animals by transitioning to a healthy and humane vegan diet. Visit ChooseVeg.com to learn more.

Watch the shocking hidden-camera video that led to the charges here:

Viewer Discretion Advised – WATCH: Cows Kicked, Stabbed and Dragged at DiGiorno Pizza Cheese Supplier (Please note, these are sentient beings, capable of feeling every strike, punch or kick) should animals be treated like this; just because they are going to be slaughtered? THE ANSWER IS NO!!

 Published on 10 Dec 2013

Horrific undercover video taken by a Mercy For Animals investigator reveals disgusting animal cruelty at a DiGiorno dairy supplier. Workers kick, beat, and stab cows and drag them by their fragile legs and necks using chains attached to tractors. 

Take action at http://www.SliceOfCruelty.com

Cruelty Critics

“The video captures workers engaged in numerous serious acts of direct physical abuse and overt brutality—they whip, beat, slap, kick, stab and yell profanity at the cows. … There is a culture of serious neglect and mistreatment of animals in this facility, and the animals are suffering. This must stop.”


Dr. Debra Teachout

“There is no question in my mind, as a veterinarian experienced with farmed animals, including cows, that much of what was being done to the cows was inhumane, brutal and almost certainly a violation of the anti-cruelty statutes of many if not all states.”


Dr. Nedim Buyukmihci

“Dragging live cows, and completely suspending them with the cow lift is severe animal abuse. The actions of these people went beyond rough handling and escalated to the level of cruelty. Kicking, beating, and hard whipping of downed cows is abusive.”


Dr. Temple Grandin

“It is abuse to beat, kick or whip an animal that cannot get up. Hitting an animal in the face is particularly painful. The fact that cows in other scenes are beaten or kicked in the head and face demonstrates the workers have either learned or have been trained that this bothers the animals more than hitting them on other areas of their bodies.”

By Dr. James Reynolds

“Workers were observed to hit, kick and whip downer cows on multiple occasions. Cows were hit in their cervical (neck), thoracic, lumbar, and head regions using hands, ropes, and a thin plastic pipe. All of these actions would have unnecessary and unjustifiable pain and suffering.”


Dr. Katherine van Ekert Onay

List from:-http://www.sliceofcruelty.com/

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Animal Welfare Groups Plan Suit in Response to USDA Decision to Support the Slaughter of Horses for Human Consumption

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“Scroll to the end of this post, to see a gallery of some of the worlds most beautiful horses…how could anyone even think, about killing one; let alone eating one??”

The U.S. Department of Agriculture has given the green light for the grisly practice of horse slaughter to resume on U.S. soil. The agency approved an application for horse slaughter inspections under federal law at a plant in New Mexico.

This news comes on the heels of the U.S. House and Senate appropriations committees’ votes to halt all funding for horse slaughter in FY 2014. The decision means that the federal government could potentially spend millions of taxpayer dollars to start up inspections at horse slaughter plants, only to have Congress terminate the process in the coming months.

In response to the USDA’s decision, The Humane Society of the United States and Front Range Equine Rescue plan to file suit immediately against the USDA to put a stop to this agency decision. The two groups previously informed USDA that they would take aggressive legal action against the agency, in light of the serious unresolved environmental and food safety issues surrounding horse slaughter.

Jonathan Lovvorn, senior vice president and chief counsel for animal protection litigation at The HSUS, said: “The USDA’s decision to start up domestic horse slaughter, while at the same time asking Congress to defund it, is bizarre and unwarranted. Slaughter plants have a history of polluting their communities and producing horsemeat that is tainted with a dangerous cocktail of banned drugs.

“We intend to hold the Obama administration accountable in federal court for this inhumane, wasteful and illegal decision.”

Hilary Wood, president of Front Range Equine Rescue, said: “America’s horses are not raised as food animals, and they receive numerous substances during their lives making them unfit and illegal for human consumption. Adding insult to injury, the suffering of the horses in the slaughter pipeline and the danger to humans makes this action more than inhumane. Horses bound for slaughter have many alternatives open to them including re-training, re-homing, and humane euthanasia. We remain committed to stopping this insult to justice and our sense of justice.”

The USDA’s approval is particularly surprising, considering the recent scandal in the European Union, where horsemeat was discovered in food products labeled as beef.  The operation of horse slaughter plants in the U.S. will make it more difficult to prevent the commingling between horsemeat and beef products that occurred in Europe.

Horses are raised as pets and for use in show, sport, work and recreation in the U.S. and are regularly administered drugs that are expressly prohibited by current federal regulations for use in animals intended for human consumption. For example, a common pain reliever routinely administered to all types of horses, Phenylbutazone, is known to cause potentially fatal human diseases, and if the animal has taken the drug, the meat is adulterated and should not be eaten. There is also no system in the U.S. to track medications and veterinary treatments given to horses to ensure that their meat is safe.

Any facility slaughtering thousands of horses will necessarily be processing the blood, organs and remains of animals whose tissues and blood may contain significant amounts of dangerous substances, which are either known to be dangerous, or which have never been tested on humans and therefore present completely unknown dangers. At least six applications for horse slaughter inspections have been filed with the USDA.

Background:

  • This month, the U.S. House and Senate Appropriations committees voted to block funding for inspections of horse slaughter plants. President Obama’s proposed FY 2014 budget also included a request for Congress to prevent tax dollars from supporting horse slaughter.
  • The HSUS and FRER also filed petitions with USDA’s Food Safety and Inspection Service and the U.S. Food and Drug Administration to declare horsemeat unfit for human consumption. USDA denied that petition.
  • According to a national poll conducted last year, 80 percent of Americans disapprove of horse slaughter.
  • “Kill buyers” gather up horses from random sources and profit by selling healthy horses for slaughter that bring the best price per pound for their meat. USDA reports show that approximately 92 percent of American horses going to slaughter are healthy and would otherwise be able to go on to lead productive lives.
  • The methods used to kill horses rarely result in quick, painless deaths, as horses often endure repeated blows to render them unconscious and sometimes remain conscious during the slaughtering process. When horse slaughter plants previously operated in the U.S., the USDA documented severe injuries to horses in the slaughter pipeline, including broken bones and eyeballs hanging from a thread of skin.
  • The Safeguard American Food Exports Act, H.R. 1094 / S. 541, introduced this year by U.S. Sens. Mary Landrieu, D-La., and Lindsey Graham, R-S.C., and Reps. Patrick Meehan, R-Pa., and Jan Schakowsky, D-Ill., is a bipartisan measure that would outlaw horse slaughter operations in the U.S., end the current export of American horses for slaughter abroad, and protect the public from consuming toxic horsemeat.

News Link:-http://www.humanesociety.org/news/press_releases/2013/06/usda-horse-slaughter-suit-062813.html

Some of the world most beautiful horses – should not end up on a dinner plate!

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AgGag Casts Doubt On Bill Requiring Quick Turnover of Animal Abuse Photos To Police

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Tennessee’s proposed “Ag Gag” law suffered a setback Thursday when the state’s attorney general labeled it “constitutionally suspect” and said it could violate freedom of the press and the right against self-incrimination.

The bill, awaiting either Gov. Bill Haslam’s signature or veto, would force anyone who purposefully took pictures or video of livestock abuse to turn those over to law enforcement within 48 hours.

That limits the media, incriminates those who captured the video through trespassing and exposes police to copyright problems should the public ask for copies, Attorney General Robert Cooper wrote.

Haslam has until Wednesday to either sign or veto the bill, his spokesman confirmed, but the governor’s office offered no further comment. If he took no action at all, it would pass into law automatically, with those who broke it facing a $50 fine.

The bill’s author, Rep. Andy Holt, R-Dresden, said he didn’t see a constitutional problem and compared its provisions to forcing medical doctors to report suspected child abuse.

A hog farmer and relentless critic of the Humane Society of the United States, Holt said the only reason someone would want to videotape animal abuse and hang onto it would be for profit.

“If people are engaged in criminal activity, it will be abundantly apparent.  “No it will not” You don’t have to have two months to provide clarity to law enforcement,” Holt said. “Ask yourself this question: Should an animal have to suffer an abusive situation for two months?” “Those animals will suffer whether being videod or not, if they are already in an abusive situation; often the management don’t know their animals are being abused. To ensure a conviction, evidence has to be collected over a period of time, so people can’t say it was a “one off” act of violence…FFS people…open your eyes. Those who want Ag-Gag laws must want them for a reason!!”

A two-month undercover investigation by the Humane Society led to state and federal animal abuse charges last year against famed Tennessee Walking Horse trainer Jackie McConnell of Collierville. The group released stomach-turning video of McConnell beating a horse and of its legs being chemically burned to encourage the breed’s prized longer, higher gait.

Holt said his bill has nothing to do with that case. Instead, it would prevent video of legitimate animal husbandry being represented as inhumane and used for fund raising, he said.

Humane Society leaders held a news conference earlier Thursday at Gaylord Opryland Convention Center, where the group is holding its Animal Care Expo. They denounced Holt’s bill and called upon the Tennessee attorney general’s office to investigate the walking horse industry.

A letter from the group to Cooper cites a 76 percent positive rate on U.S. Department of Agriculture tests for foreign substances on horses’ legs at the Tennessee Walking Horse National Celebration last year in Shelbyville.

“We need to know what perversion looks like and not be a part of any activity to either celebrate it, encourage it or somehow honor it,” said Dr. Michael Blackwell, president of the online Humane Society University.

Mike Inman, the Celebration’s CEO, didn’t respond to messages left Thursday but has said that walking horse trainers found McConnell’s actions deplorable. He said the industry is striving for 100 percent compliance with the federal Horse Protection Act.

Written by Heidi Hall The Tennessean

News Like:-http://www.tennessean.com/article/20130510/NEWS0201/305100086/AG-casts-doubt-bill-requiring-quick-turnover-animal-abuse-photos-police?nclick_check=1

Northern Irelands Only Horse Slaughtering House Stops

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“This might just be about the shortest post I have ever done, but it’s certainly one that’s made me the happiest, hence the slideshow of noble equines! Just a shame more can’t follow suit!! “Seriously, look at the beautiful, graceful equines below; then tell me why anyone; would want to eat one?? I’d bet every breed of horse below, has gone to a slaughterhouse, somewhere in the world; often looking as good as they do in the pictures! It’s not just the old & sick horses they slaughter, they want nice fit, healthy horses too!!”

Published on 14/04/2013 11:39

THE only approved horseslaughtering house in Northern Ireland has stopped killing horses, the Agriculture Minister Michelle O’Neill has revealed.

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She explained that the Armagh plant asked the Food Standards Agency (FSA) to remove its authorisation and stopped killing horses at the end of January.

“There was one slaughter plant in County Armagh approved by the FSA for equine slaughter,” she explained.

“This establishment is also approved for the slaughter of cattle and sheep. It ceased slaughtering horses completely on 25th January 2013 and has asked the FSA to completely remove their authorisation to slaughter equines.”

She said this was the only establishment approved by the FSA to slaughter horses in Northern Ireland in recent times.

News Link:-http://www.londonderrysentinel.co.uk/news/business/local-businesses/ni-s-only-horse-slaughtering-house-stops-1-4974741

Laws Could Keep Americans In The Dark About Animal Cruelty

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“More of what I was saying in an earlier post…what have they got to hide that warrants a new laws to keep customers in the dark?? If I still ate meat or dairy products…it would make me all the more suspicious about what they have to hide!!! If a company has to have an Ag-Gag rule, it’s safe to say something is going on that they don’t want the public to know about. How can you be sure the meat you have on your plate wasn’t ridiculed & abused sick MF’s wanting a bit of fun; before it was slaughtered??  By having these stupid new law‘s, they are almost admitting their guilty of something!!

 There’s only one way to make these company’s pay for keeping their abuse behind closed doors; SIMPLY don’t shop at the places they supply!!

Only buy food from sources who have installed CCTV policies; at least you know they do not have anything to hide.  Choose organic meat, I know it might be a tad more expensive but animals on organic farms eat organically grown feed, aren’t confined 100 percent of the time (as they sometimes are on conventional farms), and are raised without antibiotics or synthetic growth hormones. When shopping for organic foods, always look for the USDA seal on any kind of packaged food. For meat and dairy, this seal ensures you’re getting antibiotic- and hormone-free products. When buying meat or produce that isn’t packaged, look for a sign stating that it’s organic, or ask the store clerk.

Chickens raised for food spend their lives in dirty sheds with tens of thousands of other poultry. The intense crowding often leads to outbreaks of disease and unsanitary conditions.

The chickens are pumped with hormones to grow so large that their legs and organs can’t keep up, making heart attacks, organ failure, and growth deformities common.

Disturbinglystate legislators around the country are bowing to corporate pressure and considering laws that will keep consumers in the dark about these abusive conditions by punishing undercover documentation by investigators at slaughterhouses and farms.

The corporate-friendly American Legislative Exchange Council (ALEC)—also infamously responsible for pushing Stand Your Ground and Voter Suppression ID laws—is lobbying this and similar laws in six states. The laws will criminalize the filming of animal abuse at factory farms, as well as punish those that lie on job applications to get hired.

“This, I think, is a good example of just how much this industry has to hide,” said Paul Shapiro, spokesperson for the Humane Society of the United States (HSUS). “You know you’ve got a lot to hide when you want to make it a crime merely to take a photo of what you are doing.”

Bills are being considered in California, Nebraska, Tennessee, Indiana, Arkansas and Pennsylvania. Other states like Minnesota, Vermont, and North Carolina are expected to consider similar laws.

Videos exposing the suffering of slaughterhouse animals have already sparked many states to pass similar laws to what ALEC is pushing. In Iowa, for example, an “Ag-Gag” law makes it a misdemeanor to infiltrate farms, and Utah bans unauthorized photography in farms.

The New Dirty Dozen: 12 Foods to Eat Organic

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The latest list of foods with the highest pesticide residue includes some familiar fruits and vegetables, and some surprises.

Foods With Pesticide Residue

The benefits of eating organic food go straight to the farm, where no pesticides and chemical fertilizers are used to grow the organic produce shipped to grocers. That means workers and farm neighbors aren’t exposed to potentially harmful chemicals, it means less fossil fuel converted into fertilizers and it means healthier soil that should sustain crops for generations to come.

For individuals, organic food also has benefits. Eating organic means avoiding the pesticide residue left on foods, and it may even mean more nutritious varietals, though research into that subject has yielded mixed results. While there are few if any proven health impacts from consuming trace quantities of pesticides on foods, a growing number of people take the precaution of avoiding exposure just in case, particularly in the cases of pregnant women (growing babies are exposed to most of the chemicals that mom consume) and the parents of young children.

But organic food can cost more, meaning many families are loathe to shell out the extra cash for organic produce on every shopping trip. That’s what makes the Environmental Working Group‘s annual list of the dirty dozen foods so useful. The group analyzes Department of Agriculture data about pesticide residue and ranks foods based on how much or little pesticide residue they have. The group estimates that individuals can reduce their exposure by 80% if they switch to organic when buying these 12 foods.

The USDA and farm and food industry representatives are quick to remind consumers that the government sets allowable pesticide residue limits it deems safe, and the produce for sale in your grocery store should meet those standards. Watchdogs like Environmental Working Group see those limits as too liberal, and see the dirty dozen list as a teaching tool to educate consumers about the benefits of organic food.

Even Environmental Working Group says that the benefits of eating fresh fruits and vegetables outweighs the known risks of consuming pesticide residue. At TheDailyGreen.com, we always favour educating consumers so that we can make the decision for ourselves.

Note: The 2011 dirty dozen list reflects testing data from the 2010 harvest, and because some pesticide use is dependent on weather conditions that vary by farm, it may not reflect the pesticide residue on produce in your grocery store.

That’s why we include not only those fruits and vegetables on Environmental Working Group’s current list, but produce that has made the list in the past, as well as information about pesticides used to produce meat, dairy and some other favourite foods that aren’t on Environmental Working Group’s latest dirty dozen list.

In general, tree fruits, berries, leafy greens dominate the list. Since the USDA tests produce after a typical household preparation, fruits and vegetables with thick skins that are removed before eating (melons, avocado, corn, etc.) tend to have the lowest amounts of pesticide residue.

If you don’t see a favourite food here, check Whats On My Food, a project of the Pesticide Action Network that makes the same USDA pesticide residue testing data available in an easy-to-use database.

Visit the link below, then click “NEXT” at the bottom of the page. There are 20 pages in full, starting with the worst…Apples, then Celery!!

Click Herehttp://www.thedailygreen.com/healthy-eating/eat-safe/dirty-dozen-foods#ixzz2OC60EmrD

What’s On My Food?:-  This is a brilliant & easy way to find out how many pesticide residues are left on your food. 

Pesticides – A Public Problem
…on our food, even after washing;
…in our bodies, for years;
…& in our environment, travelling many miles on wind, water and dust.

This is a searchable database designed to make the public problem of pesticide exposure visible and more understandable.

How does this tool work? We link pesticide food residue data with the toxicology for each chemical, making this information easily searchable for the first time.

Use the tool, share it with others: we built it to help move the public conversation about pesticides into an arena where you don’t have to be an expert to participate.

At Pesticide Action Network (PAN), we believe that pesticides are a public health problem requiring public engagement to solve. We want you to have the information you need to take action based on a solid understanding of the issues. What’s On My Food? builds on PAN’s 28-year tradition of making pesticide science accessible

Click here to find out what’s on your food:-http://www.whatsonmyfood.org/  Read The Foot Note!

Equine Welfare Alliance: US Horsemeat Banned in EU

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CHICAGO, (EQUINE WELFARE ALLIANCE/PR Newswire) – Since Congress lifted the ban on USDA inspections of horse meat, several small shuttered cattle slaughter plants have clamored for the USDA to provide horse meat inspections.

Ricardo De Los Santos of Valley Meats, a New Mexico plant, went as far as to sue the USDA for not providing the service. The attorney for Valley Meats has announced it will be opening in three weeks.

Unfortunately for those wishing to bring horse slaughter back to the US, they will have to do so without the ability to sell to the EU, the main market for US horse meat. The Equine Welfare Alliance has received confirmation from EU authorities that “by virtue of Commission decision 2011/163/EU the US is not authorized to export horsemeat to the EU.

The decision was made in 2011, when the USDA neglected to comply with new regulations requiring submittal of a drug residue control program. Approval of such an application requires extensive review as well as audits and can take up to several years to complete.

The EU authority (SANCO) went on to say “Our Directorate General, up to now, does not record a recent residue monitoring plan on horse meat submitted by USDA.”  In other words, the process has yet to begin.

The scandal over horse meat being substituted for beef in a myriad of products, as well as the finding of the banned drug phenylbutazone in some of those products has further dimmed the prospects for a lifting of the ban.

Secretary of Agriculture Tom Vilsack, in an interview with Reuters, said sequestration could cause sporadic food shortages if inspectors aren’t available to examine meat, poultry and egg products. Obviously, providing inspectors for horse meat would further exacerbate the need to protect US consumers. Vilsack shocked many today when he was quoted as saying he hoped that Congress could come up with an alternative to horse slaughter.

EWA’s John Holland explains the bleak prospects for private horse slaughter plants in the US, saying “these plants will have no access to the markets even if the EU ban is lifted because the distribution is controlled by a few multi-nationals, and those expecting to contract with these companies should heed the story of Natural Valley Farms (SK Canada) which lost millions trying to do so.”

News Link:-http://horsebackmagazine.com/hb/archives/21225

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