Saturday, May 28

The blood farms that “feed” the meat industry

That the meat industry is a predatory machinery of Nature and of the millions of animals that it keeps captive in all kinds of farms is an undeniable fact. Less known are some of his practices to improve his accounts of results, such as the use of the hormone PMSG (pregnant mare serum gonadotropin)which, as its own acronym indicates, is extracted from pregnant mares.

A official technical sheet describes its properties to induce “follicular development in the inactive ovaries of sexually mature females and also, frequently, in prepubertal and senile females.” In this way, the compound from this hormone is marketed with the promise of improving the fertility of females on farms, raising a greater capacity for animal husbandry.

An investigation led by the Animal Welfare Foundation and disseminated by a coalition of NGOs from across Europe, from Eurogroup for Animals to the Franz Weber Foundation, has brought to the fore the terrible conditions of mares in dozens of farms located in Iceland. In the images you can see how they beat the animals, how they place and remove large cannulas to carry out massive blood extractions and how the hygienic-sanitary conditions are deplorable. What matters, of course, is maximizing profits, even if this means that many animals suffer and die.

The horses are subjected to completely avoidable violence, while an average of 5 liters of blood are extracted from them every week, a practice that violates any international recommendation on livestock uses and animal welfare. They are, literally, elements from which to squeeze as much as possible to make subsequent veterinary medicines.

With the promise that ranchers will obtain more offspring, and that it will mean less workload and greater economic benefit, companies of very different sizes endorse these practices to fatten their pockets. The example of this aberration has been seen after the registration of a legislative proposal in Iceland itself.

In recent months, deputies from various political formations promoted an initiative to ban these sadistic practices, aimed at the meat and dairy industry, and in the period of citizen participation It has been possible to verify in a crystalline way who is behind all this.

Is it possible to support this atrocity?

For the National Association of Breeders of Select Sheep of Rasa Aragonesa (ANGRA), for the Sheep Promotion Consortium and for veterinarians associated with livestock, it is a necessary product so as not to slaughter cattle. It’s a crazy argument: bleed the pregnant mares because otherwise we would have to kill the mothers that are not fertile on our farms. They say nothing about existing alternatives in the pharmaceutical market or how cruel this work dynamic is. As it is in Iceland, more than 2,800 kilometers from the Iberian Peninsula, it is something that should be hidden.

Thus, together with well-known Spanish food corporations and sectoral organizations from other countries, they have put pressure so that the representatives of the Alþingi -the Icelandic Parliament- do not carry out the prohibition proposal. Later, these same companies will place an “Animal Welfare” sticker on their products, as if bleeding mares were something foreign to their entire process.

AWF research has determined that at least 5,000 mares suffer this torment in Iceland alone, but the practices also take place in Latin America, with complaints of cruelty in Argentina and Uruguay.

Once again, profit is above the integrity of animals, and all the strategies of the meat and dairy lobby are aimed at softening or, if you like, giving a coat of paint to a sector based on violence towards animals as a mechanized process, where lives become numbers and statistics tending to revise an income statement each fiscal quarter. The next time you see an animal welfare certificate, remember that blood farms provide the necessary “fertility” to those livestock farms.

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