August 05, 2012
ACTIVISTS have released footage they claim shows a piggery outside Canberra with buckets of dead piglets, workers beating sows and fly infestations.
It's believed authorities raided the piggery on Friday night after Animal Liberation delivered footage of filthy conditions and cruel slaughtering practices.
Yass police confirmed a piggery near Murrumbateman was under investigation.
Piggery owners in the area could not be reached for comment last night.
The Animal Liberation NSW executive director Mark Pearson said: ''This piggery is one of the worst examples of factory farming where animals are treated like 'production machines' and no thought is given to their capacity to suffer.
''Images also included buckets of dead piglets, a sledgehammer used to bludgeon pigs, and sows with open sores.''
The chief of industry lobby group Australian Pork Limited, Andrew Spencer, said he was ''utterly appalled'' at the footage.
''The majority of pork producers in Australia rigorously adhere to world best practice when it comes to animal welfare,'' he said.
''There is no way that we can tolerate treating pigs like this.''
Mr Pearson said his group gathered and verified footage for two months before contacting authorities on Thursday.
He said pigs were notoriously difficult to kill humanely.
''Out of all the animals that go through an abattoir the ones that stay conscious longest are pigs,'' he said yesterday.
''You've got to be really on the ball.''
Animal Liberation last year released footage of animals being mistreated at Hawkesbury Valley Meat Processors, in Sydney's north-west, prompting the government to shut the facility down and launch reforms to safeguard animal welfare in the state.
From July 1 next year, it will be compulsory for NSW abattoirs to have animal welfare officers monitor and take responsibility for the well-being of animals.
Random audits of animal welfare compliance will also be increased.
Police would not comment except to say that investigations were continuing. AAP