A questionable undercover video from a Minnesota farm released today by Mercy for Animals, a front group for the Humane Society of the United States, is the latest attack against America’s hog farmers. In advance of a press conference that is expected to be full of misinformation, it is important to know the facts: An independent veterinarian, who was taken by law enforcement to the Pipestone facility shown in the video, determined that there were no signs of inhumane treatment or violations of good production standards. Therefore, no charges were filed.
But that wasn’t good enough for this Pipestone farm. Its care for animals is so firmly rooted in its commitment to industry best practices that it did something consistent with its proactive approach to continuous improvement – it brought in a third party to investigate. Though the MFA-produced undercover video was unfortunately never made available to Pipestone, the farm’s investigation determined that the employee involved had not been following animal care protocols, and he was immediately fired.
America’s pork producers are primarily family farmers who care about the animals they raise and the food they produce for the American consumer. It is the same food they produce for their own families. They don’t need questionable undercover videos produced by organizations with political agendas to remind them of their commitment to animal care.
American farmers have the trust of the American people and don’t deserve the onslaught they face from groups such as the Humane Society of the United States that have deep pockets from deceptive fundraising practices.
This latest attack by HSUS and MFA clearly is the result of the pressure they’re feeling after a year of significant state and federal legislative losses. HSUS has spent significant amounts of its donors’ money on futile legislative efforts and on a lawsuit that had nothing to do with animal welfare was dismissed by a U.S. District Court judge. HSUS donors, especially the many whose priorities are the protection of companion animals, deserve better than that.