Alberta Agriculture Urges Producers to Starve Pigs

Feed withdrawal saves costs and contamination photo MB Coop March 7 2013  with credit.jpg

In a Manitoba Cooperator article titled "Feed withdrawal saves costs and contamination" (March 7, 2013), an Alberta Agriculture scientist advises producers to starve pigs before transporting the animals to their deaths.

Dr. Eduardo Beltranena, a research scientist with Alberta Agriculture and Rural Development, states: "Any feed left in the gut at the time of slaughter goes entirely to waste." He warns that producers who are not practicing "feed withdrawal" risk "hits to their pocketbook."

Beltranena reports that "optimum pork quality" is achieved when pigs are starved for 14 to 18 hours, noting: "A farm that ships two truckloads of hogs per week would save $1,000 per week."

As our first investigation at a Manitoba pig factory farm showed, Canada's pigs are crammed into tiny, filthy cages where they can barely move. Their bodies are cut and mutilated without any painkillers, and they are mercilessly beaten, neglected, and often left to die, unattended, in immense agony. At the end of their tortured lives, they scream in terror as they wait their turn to have metal bolts fired into their skulls. Alberta Agriculture now seeks to add starvation to this list of cruelties.

You don't have to take part in the suffering of these animals. By choosing a plant-based diet you can help end the cycle of violence. To learn more about moving to a meat-free diet, go to