No Place for Animal Abuse on Farms
April 21, 2011 - The Animal Agriculture Alliance condemns all animal abuse- whether on farms, in processing plants or in the home. As a diverse coalition working to promote farmers' commitment to their animals, we have long promoted implementation of animal care programs developed by the national farm and ranch organizations in conjunction with animal care specialists and veterinarians.
Another video created by anti-animal agriculture activists has surfaced that seeks to cause consumers to doubt farmers' commitment to animal care. The violent images shown are disturbing. If an investigation finds the video to be genuine, we believe that the severest penalties allowed by law should be imposed on all parties involved, as well as those who failed to stop and report these actions immediately to the proper authorities. It should be noted that the activist group waited weeks before turning over the footage.
This abuse is not representative of America's farms. Farmers and ranchers dedicate their lives to the health and well-being of their animals in order to ensure that the food they produce for the public- and their own families- is wholesome and safe. Animal care is their top priority, as evidenced by the species-specific animal welfare guidelines that each industry has embraced. The National Milk Producers Federation's comprehensive animal care guide for dairies called the National Dairy FARM Program was developed by veterinarians and animal care experts and includes on-farm audits that showcase producers' commitment to animal welfare.
The National Cattlemen's Beef Association further explains:
"Beef Quality Assurance (BQA) guidelines, which are funded by The Beef Checkoff and have been in place since 1987, emphasize the humane treatment of cattle. According to BQA, euthanasia is humane death occurring without pain and suffering. The decision to euthanize an animal should consider the animal's well-being, and when euthanasia is necessary, BQA clearly states it should be done by either a trained employee or a veterinarian in accordance with the American Association of Bovine Practitioners (AABP) guidelines. BQA program guidelines were developed, and are continually updated, in partnership with leading animal health experts including AABP. BQA guidelines, which are available in both English and Spanish, are put into practice through hands-on training programs for cattlemen and their employees. The beef industry is a leading advocate for research funding to close knowledge gaps and implement the best science-based practices on all cattle operations. The BQA Code of Conduct states that abuse of animals will not be tolerated. We believe any individual who witnesses inappropriate animal treatment is responsible for making every effort to stop it immediately."
Don't just take our word for it- or that of animal rights activist groups. Get to know your local farmers and ranchers and ask them directly about their commitment to animal care and to providing safe, wholesome food for you and your family.
Read a compilation of responses from the agriculture community here.
About the Alliance:
The Animal Agriculture Alliance, a 501(c)(3) non-profit organization, is a broad-based coalition of individual farmers and ranchers, producer organizations, suppliers, packer-processors, private industry and retailers. The Alliance's mission is to communicate the important role of animal agriculture to our nation's economy, productivity, vitality, security and that animal well-being is central to producing safe, high-quality, affordable food and other products essential to our daily lives.