NMPF Statement on Humane Society Undercover Video of Livestock Markets
Release Date: June 25, 2008
In response to the latest undercover video released June 25th by the Humane Society of the United States, the National Milk Producers Federation again condemns – as we did when HSUS released it first two videos in January and May – the treatment of the animals featured in the video clips. While dairy producers have no control over what happens to their animals once they are sold to auction markets and, ultimately, to meat packing facilities, every entity in the food chain ought to be concerned about this incident.
Dairy farmers recognize their responsibility to provide appropriate care for their animals. We are in the final stages of distributing supplemental educational materials for dairy producers to encourage them to make the best-informed decisions about animal handling, transportation and culling. We have worked with the Dairy Quality Assurance Center for many years to develop and make available to dairy farmers educational materials about the best practices to provide quality care for their herds, and this additional information will augment our long-standing efforts in this area.
Also, NMPF has joined with meat packing organizations in asking for a change in current regulations to prohibit non-ambulatory animals at slaughter plants from being reinspected and approved by government regulators for further processing if the animal is found to not pose a food safety concern. We are glad the U.S. Department of Agriculture recently announced it is making changes to those regulations, as we had requested back in April.
Everyone in the system of meat production has a responsibility to act in a coordinated fashion to ensure that food products reaching consumers are safe, and to handle livestock in a responsible fashion. We will continue our interaction with other organizations in the food chain to achieve that objective.