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Undercover video shows cow abuse

January 31st, 2008, 11:56 AM

(CBS) Undercover video shows sickened cows, too weak to walk, being jabbed with forklift blades, kicked, shocked and even sprayed in the face with powerful jets of water by workers at the Hallmark Meat Packing Company in Chino, California.

"The attempt was to make them so distressed, to cause them so much suffering that these animals would get up and walk into the slaughterhouse," Humane Society President Wayne Pacelle told CBS News consumer safety correspondent Nancy Cordes.

The plant supplies Westland Meat Company, which is a major provider of meat to the USDA's school lunch program.

Wednesday, Westland's president and CEO temporarily suspended operations at the plant saying, "We are shocked, saddened and sickened by what we have seen."

"Downer cows" - those unable to walk because of illness or injury - are restricted from use in school lunches and elsewhere.

Cordes reports that meat-industry officials say there is no way to know if the cows actually entered the meat supply. They point out that the clearly ailing livestock would have had to pass a gauntlet of USDA veterinarians and inspectors before being slaughtered and sent to market.

Nevertheless, the USDA today stopped Westland from supplying meat to federal food and nutrition programs pending the outcome of its investigation.

And while the workers in this video have been fired, the Humane Society says the most shocking thing about the abuse shown here is that it happens all the time.

January 31st, 2008, 12:01 PM
we only eat happy cows grown locally for that exact reason.


January 31st, 2008, 12:02 PM
:sad: :wall: I said it before .... people suck.

January 31st, 2008, 01:43 PM
Why are people so cruel:sad:

January 31st, 2008, 11:00 PM

makes me want to go vegan....poor cows

February 1st, 2008, 07:16 AM
The thing is....

Even if there's a possibility the cows don't end up as people food, they may end up as pet food.

I wouldn't mind going vegetarian and am semi there already, but dogs and cats need protein.

I don't feel good about feeding my dogs anything whether it's commercial food full of chemical and additives, or raw meat which comes from animals that are mistreated or diseased.

I firmly believe in life energy in all living things and the "spirit" of an animal can affect it's meat. That's probably why you see in some Native American hunting they say a prayer for the animal and give thanks for providing meat and other useful items. So if a meat animal is mistreated, how is the quality of the meat? Or worse, does the damaged "energy" of the meat animal get absorbed somehow into the consumer? What kind of effect would that have?

Things that make you go hmmmm....

Sometimes it feels like a lose/lose situation.

Another bit of useless info filed away in my brain:

In some parts of the world where there is cannibalism, the people would be interviewed by inquiring minds. They sometimes say that if their meat source is afraid or terrified before dying, then it "improves" the taste of the meat. Sick, eh? Something to do with the adrenaline chemicals flooding the flesh. :shrug:

I've watched Jewish and Muslim religious-based slaughter techniques and have to say their methods are more humane (and cleaner) than the crap that goes on in N America's slaughterhouses.

February 4th, 2008, 12:56 AM
Think of absolutely anything, search for it, and you'll find it online. Probably on video, too if you look hard enough.

I'm not doubting that this happens, but I doubt that it happens "all the time" like the Humane Society says.

There ARE standards that have to be followed. Unfortunately a lot slips through the cracks as in any industry, but I don't believe for a second that a lot of the meat that we eat is from downer cows.

I agree with rain; definitely buy your meat locally if you really care about what you're putting into your bodies and if you care about the standard of care that the animals receive.

One thing that can change and that needs to change are the livestock transportation laws. There are laws in place that regulate how animals are shipped, but it's obviously not enough. Downer cattle cannot be shipped, but they are. This needs to be enforced. I also think that these cattle need to be checked en route and that anything sick or injured needs to be humanely destroyed ASAP. It really sickens me to think of the terrible journeys that some of these animals make...

February 12th, 2008, 10:43 PM
Yeah, that video was terrible. I have eaten beef since then and will only be buying free range from now on. Every little bit helps i guess.

I also read somewhere that 10 of the 12 cases of mad cow disease in N. America were allegedly from 'downer' cows.

February 15th, 2008, 07:51 PM
Yeah, that video was terrible. I have eaten beef since then and will only be buying free range from now on. Every little bit helps i guess.

I also read somewhere that 10 of the 12 cases of mad cow disease in N. America were allegedly from 'downer' cows.

What exactly is free range? Rather than buying something from a grocery store that may or may not be regulated, try to find a local farmer who has healthy stock and buy directly from him.

Words like "natural," "organic" and "free range" do not necessarily mean that what you're getting really is better for you than the regular-priced product at the big box grocery store.

February 15th, 2008, 08:12 PM
I truly do hope that this is one of those "slipped through the cracks" situations. :sad: One of the MANY reasons we should try to buy locally from a known source whenever possible.