The role of meat and other animal products in Americans’ diets continues to come under fire, with activist organizations’ continued efforts to push for the introduction of meatless meals in the home, in the workplace, in school cafeterias and even in state legislatures.
The Animal Agriculture Alliance learned this week that popular Food Network, Inc. personality, Giada De Laurentis launched her 2013 season with an episode entitled “Meatless Mondays.”...More
The need for agriculture to maintain the public's support of animal production practices while at the same time provide enough food for the world will be examined by experts at Purdue University and the U.S. Department of Agriculture. “Balancing Act: Meeting the Growing Demands for Food, Enhanced Animal Well-being and Consumer Trust” will be the topic of discussion Feb. 2 during the annual Ag Forecast...More
I know you care what your customers think, because one of the most-read stories on the National Hog Farmer Web site the past few weeks reports on a consumer perception survey conducted by Purdue University last summer. Here’s what else I know, you are doing a good job caring for your animals and producing a safe, affordable pork product. But are consumers aware of the real story behind how pork is produced?...More
A first-of-its kind effort to provide a centralized resource where Iowans can receive information about appropriate farm animal care was announced today in Des Moines by a unique coalition of farmers, animal well-being experts, veterinarians and industry leaders....More
This year up to 40%of European Union(EU)pigs will come from farms that are flouting animal welfare rules. To avoid this trade in illegally-farmed pigs, British shoppers should look for the British independent Red Tractor logo, says Britain’s National Pig Association....More
Antibiotic use in animal agriculture and headlines about antibiotic-resistant “superbugs” are a common theme in popular media, among activist groups, some legislators, regulatory agencies and perhaps the general public....More
How would you rank the pork industry challenges in the order of importance? Would your list include sow gestation housing, antibiotic use in livestock, the Renewable Fuels Standard/ethanol production, 2013 Corn Crop, Porcine Reproductive and Respiratory Syndrome (PRRS)?...More
Brownfield Radio Network reports that the Nebraska Farmers Union is working with the Humane Society of the United States (HSUS) on the launch of a new marketing program for “humanely-raised” livestock and poultry products. The program is called Farm to Fitness. Farmers Union spokesman Graham Christensen says the program will use health and fitness centers as drop points for cooperatively-purchased food orders....More
Most of the infectious causes of diarrhea in pigs are commonly present in herds but only occasionally expressed. These “endemic” diseases include rotaviruses, E. coli, Isospora (coccidiosis), salmonella and Lawsonia intracellularis (ileitis)....More
HSUS has filed a complaint with the U.S. Department of Agriculture’s Office of the Inspector General asking for an investigation into the National Pork Board’s potential use of checkoff dollars to support the NPPC’s lobbying efforts....More
Whether due to lameness or unproductivity, culling sows is a frequent event on most hog farms. Because it is not a daily task, it is not given the emphasis and training needed to effectively manage this neglected profit center, says Terry Whiting, DVM, manager of Animal Health and Welfare, Manitoba Agriculture and Rural Initiatives....More
Why is it that whenever you mix unfamiliar sows or pigs in a group a fierce battle ensues?
It’s in their genes. Pigs are hard-wired to establish a hierarchy when placed in the near proximity of others. That’s the conclusion USDA livestock behavioral specialist Jeremy Marchant-Forde offered at a sow housing workshop during the Leman Swine Conference recently. But he adds a caveat: Given a choice, they might just avoid the altercation altogether. At least, that’s what their ancestors would do....More
You may have noticed that we had an election this week. It seems like there has been almost as much time devoted to analyzing the election results on various media outlets as there was time devoted to political advertising—I did say “almost.” I’ve spent several days sorting through the various election results—and I’m still sorting....More
Danish pig producers have announced they are confident of being ready in time for the European Union’s partial ban on the use of sow stalls. According to the latest estimates from Denmark, the industry claims around 85% of its farmers are already keeping pregnant sows in group systems, according to a report Monday by Ed Bedington for the Global Meat News....More
Two of the most-read stories this week on the National Hog Farmer Web site were devoted to Tyson Foods, Inc.’s recent announcement about implementing an on-farm auditing program, called the Tyson FarmCheck program....More
Pork production facilities built and operated in the 21st century need to provide optimum environmental conditions to maximize production efficiency and provide a safe and healthy environment for pigs and workers while conserving energy. To accomplish these goals requires a fully integrated ventilation system that is specifically designed and installed for the specific barn and animals housed....More
Missouri Farmers Care, a consortium of agricultural groups which successfully beat back two initiatives in the state supported by the Humane Society of the United States (HSUS), is supporting similar efforts in North Dakota.
Missouri Farmers Care has been assisting the North Dakota Animal Stewards, a broad-based coalition that is opposing a misleading ballot initiative in North Dakota....More
Tyson Foods, Inc., the nation’s leading producer of meat and poultry, today announced it is launching a program to personally audit the treatment of animals at the livestock and poultry farms that supply the company. The effort is in line with the company’s core value to serve as a steward of the animals entrusted to it....More
Students and alumni of California State University at Chico, which has a significant agriculture program, quickly revolted last week at a news release put out by the Humane Society of the United States (HSUS) that proclaimed the school had signed onto the Meatless Monday scam perpetuated by People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals (PETA) propaganda....More
The management skills of swine producers throughout the European Union (EU) will be put to the test beginning Jan. 1, 2013, with the mandated move away from gestation sow stalls to group housing. Swine welfare experts predict that 18 of the EU’s 27 pig-producing countries will meet the group-housing deadline....More
Iowa pork producers know that consumers rely on them to provide a safe and nutritious product that was raised in the best way possible, both for the animal and the farmer, according to the Iowa Pork Producers Association.
One way producers show their commitment to these ideals is by becoming Pork Quality Assurance Plus (PQA Plus)-certified and by achieving PQA Plus site status....More