USDA Sides with Humane Society to Stop Slaughterhouses Using Disabled Calves for Veal
Saturday, February 12, 2011
(photo: Farm Sanctuary)
At the urging of a leading animal rights organization, the U.S. Department of Agriculture has decided to ban the slaughter of disabled calves for veal production. The Humane Society of the United States called for the new regulation in light of its investigation of slaughterhouse practices found to be cruel towards young cows and potentially dangerous to humans.
According to the rules of the Food Safety and Inspection Service, animals being prepared to be turned into meat must be able to walk to their slaughter. This is to prevent the use of sick animals that may carry diseases such as Bovine Spongiform Encephalopathy agent, which can cause Creutzfeldt-Jakob disease in humans.
In the case of veal calves, slaughterhouses were allowed to give disabled (“downer”) calves a “second chance,” leading the farm workers to shock, kick and otherwise abuse the weakened animals to make them stand up.
In 2009, an undercover member of the Humane Society documented work at Bushway Packing, Inc. in Grand Isle, Vermont, where handlers shocked and kicked infant calves that struggled to move under their own power. Some were so young that their umbilical cords had not been removed. In some cases, animals had hooves cut off or were partially decapitated while still conscious. Bushway was eventually shut down by the government and its operators convicted of felony aggravated animal cruelty.
About 700,000 calves are slaughtered for veal annually.
Another animal rights group, Farm Sanctuary, has petitioned to apply to same limitations to disabled pigs, sheep, goats, and other livestock.
The USDA under President Barack Obama previously banned the slaughter of all adult downer cattle, requiring that they be humanely euthanized.
-David Wallechinsky, Noel Brinkerhoff
Humane Society Wants Disabled Calves Killed (by Tish Kraft, Courthouse News Service)
USDA Proposes New Protections for Downer Veal Calves (Humane Society of the United States)
- Top Stories
- Unusual News
- Where is the Money Going?
- U.S. and the World
- Appointments and Resignations
- Latest News
- Your Tax Dollars at Work…State Dept. Lobbies Abroad for Monsanto Biotech Seeds
- Director of the Federal Housing Finance Agency: Who Is Mel Watt?
- Pacific Islanders Ask U.S. Military to not Use Pagan Island for Target Practice
- Wrongful Death Lawsuit against Wells Fargo in Wrongful Foreclosure Case
- Ambassador from Chad: Who Is Maitine Djoumbe?