Walmart pork suppliers treat pregnant pigs inhumanely

September 23, 2012

Rick Berman, a highly paid lobbyist for animal abuse industries, is deceiving consumers again ("Pregnant pigs treated humanely," Sept. 20).

Numerous investigations at Walmart pork suppliers reveal pregnant pigs condemned to lives of misery inside metal cages so small they can't even turn around or lie down comfortably. These torture boxes have been widely criticized by animal welfare experts as one of the cruelest factory farming practices in the world.

Gestation crates are so inhumane they have been banned in nine U.S. states and the entire European Union. The American Veterinary Medical Association says these crates restrict sows' ability to socialize or engage in normal behaviors — all "welfare negatives." Dr. Temple Grandin, a leading farmed-animal welfare expert, says: "Sows can't turn around in a gestation crate, and that's no way to spend a life."

Walmart should follow the lead of Safeway and McDonald's and virtually every other major food provider that has already taken a stand against these cruel crates.

Nathan Runkle, Los Angeles

The writer is executive director of Mercy For Animals.

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