Is Pork the New Veal?

Many omnivores who would never touch veal are all too happy to gobble industrially farmed pork chops and bacon. Ironically, the veal industry is phasing out their most notorious cruel practice (crating calves), while the life of a breeding sow makes that of a veal calf look delightful.

Images of calves locked inside tiny crates defined what’s wrong with factory farming: a harsh, unforgiving business, where animals are treated as machines, and just about anything goes in order to drive production. For years, the veal industry defended its practices, but when we helped pass a law in Arizona in 2006 to ban veal crates, some foresighted people within the industry made a rapid turn-around. Within months, the AVA was urging its producers to phase the crates out, and leading veal producers were converting their operations to group housing.

As the veal industry makes animal welfare progress, the question must be asked: why is Big Pork defending the losing issue of gestation crate confinement? Doesn’t its rigid, unethical, and scientifically unfounded defense of gestation crate confinement―along with its effort to subvert legislation backed by The HSUS and the egg industry to transition away from barren battery cages―threaten its core business model in the long run? Do pork industry leaders think consumers are not paying attention?

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