AM News Pack – Factory farm cruelty and a possible ban on shark fins

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The animal-welfare group Mercy for Animals is presenting undercover video of alleged cruel acts on a factory farm to grocery store chains, in an effort to sway them away from purchasing produces from facilities that engage in cruelty.

The Star Tribune reports the group sent videos or met with officials early this week from Costco, Hy-Vee, Kroger and Safeway. The request specifically was for these companies to stop buying pork from Iowa Select Farms.

One of the key missions for Mercy for Animals is a ban on the use of gestation crates for sows. This practice is extremely cruel, in confining these pigs with no room to move. But the industry seems to defend this practice by stating it’s been done this way for years.

So the message is – allow the cruelty because they’ve been using these methods for years. I wish someone would point out the fact that farms did not use gestation crates many more years ago.

A bill to ban the sale and possession of shark fins passed overwhelmingly last month in the California Assembly, but the LA Times reports the bill is stumbling in the State Senate.

Once again, we have a case where “it’s been done a long time” is offered as an excuse for cruelty. This time, it’s defended as a “Chinese delicacy” going back hundreds of years.

But the LA Times story rightfully notes – “” Scientists say the fin trade has contributed to the catastrophic declines of shark populations worldwide, threatening to disrupt ocean ecosystems and encouraging the proliferation of other predators … “”

Tradition can never be an excuse for killing of a species of animal or engaging in cruelty.