It’s always delightful when the USDA gets called on its bullshit, but it’s better still when the smackdown is administered by a meat industry publication. Addressing the Vermont slaughterhouse cruelty video that broke this past Friday, Chuck Jolley of the Cattle Network quotes the USDA’s statement:
USDA and the state have suspended the operation of the facility and are conducting an investigation. These allegations of inhumane handling and treatment of animals if verified, warrant prompt corrective actions to ensure they do not happen again.
Jolley will have none of this:
“If verified?” Excuse me? HSUS has it on tape. Time and time again, they’ve managed to catch the bad guys doing inexcusable things. Meanwhile, the USDA with its much larger team of inspectors visiting thousands of facilities weekly can’t uncover one case of animal welfare violation? Somebody somewhere in the USDA hierarchy will have to explain why Pacelle’s puny little posse manages to do what the feds can’t do.
It has happened again and our industry has sustained another we-can’t-afford-it black eye. These bad actors must be found and removed from our industry immediately through the combined efforts of governmental and trade association pressure. Corrective action must be swift and indisputable. It must be so severe that any company operating anywhere within a hundred miles of the handling procedures ‘allegedly’ practiced at Bushways will quake in their corporate boots or preferably voluntarily exit the business before HSUS sneaks in their back door with video cam in hand.
Awesome piece. But the problem isn’t just with the USDA’s tepid response to the video; I’d love to see Jolley address that shameful October 1st article in Drovers by the Animal Agriculture Alliance. (Thanks, Bea.) Link.