250,000 Demand Tyson Foods Stop The Use of Gestation Crates in Pork Supply Chain

As the nation’s largest food chains eliminate gestation crates, Tyson’s inaction triggers consumer outcry.


| July 18, 2012



fotolia_talsen_pigs

Together with SumOfUs.org and the Humane Society, consumers signed a petition against Tyson to stop the use of pig gestation crates. Gestration crates greatly restrict the movements of a pregnant pig.


PHOTO: FOTOLIA/TALSEN

The following article is posted with permission from Meltwater Press.

Almost a quarter of a million people have signed a petition to Tyson Foods, the world’s second-largest meat processor and major U.S. pork supplier, created by consumer watchdog group SumOfUs.org and The Humane Society of the United States (HSUS) demanding the company to develop plans for getting the gestation crate confinement of pigs out of its supply chain.

The petition follows the announcements of many of the nation’s largest food companies — including McDonald’s, Burger King, Wendy’s, Kroger, Safeway, and Denny’s — that they will eliminate gestation crates from their supply chains. The effort also follows this spring’s release of undercover footage taken by the HSUS at a pig factory farm that was supplying animals to Tyson Foods, in which breeding pigs were crammed into gestation crates, piglets were kicked like soccer balls and swung in circles by their hind legs, and mother pigs were repeatedly beaten when they resisted being separated from their young, among other abuses.

“Consumer citizens have sent a message that is loud and clear to Tyson’s that they don’t support forcing pigs to spend their lives crammed inside cages so small they can’t even turn around,” said Taren Stinebricker-Kauffman, founder and executive director of SumOfUs.org. “Consumers are showing their power over corporations to shift their practices and shift entire industries. It’s time for Tyson to move beyond gestation crates to alternative housing.”

While other leading pork companies — such as Smithfield Foods and Hormel — have stated their company-owned pig breeding operations will be gestation crate-free by 2017, and Cargill’s breeding operations are already 50 percent gestation crate-free, Tyson has no plans to get gestation crates out of its supply chain, and continues defending their use.

“Countless people care about how animals raised for food are abused, and gestation crate confinement has come to epitomize that cruelty,” continued Stinebrickner-Kauffman. “The demise of gestation crates has become inevitable, and Tyson should stop lagging behind its competitors and start thinking outside the crate.”





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