Farmed Animal Watch: Objective Information for the Thinking Advocate
Farmed Animal Watch
[missing header image] Subscribe to Farmed Animal Watch

JUNE 10 , 2008 -- Number 17, Volume 8

1. KFC CANADA AND PETA REACH AGREEMENT

“The mock-meat market remains small, but with the KFC deal it's about to get a whole lot bigger,” declared Canada’s Globe and Mail newspaper. After five years and more than 12,000 protests at KFC restaurants and KFC executives’ homes, and seven months of negotiations, KFC Canada and People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals have reached an agreement. Priszm Income Fund, which owns 461 Canadian KFC restaurants, has agreed to:

  • add a vegan ‘chicken’ item to the menu
  • phase in purchases of all chickens from suppliers that use controlled-atmosphere killing (CAK). KFC Canada is the first major restaurant chain to make such a commitment.
  • improve its animal welfare audit criteria to reduce the number of broken bones and other injuries suffered by birds.
  • urge its suppliers to adopt better practices, including improved lighting, lower stocking density and ammonia levels, and a phase-out of growth-promoting drugs and breeding practices that cripple chickens.
  • and form an animal welfare advisory panel to monitor the changes and recommend further advancements.

Most of the 300 independent Canadian KFC franchisees have agreed to abide by the terms. PETA has agreed to call off its Kentucky Fried Cruelty campaign in Canada.

“Our preference is to have nothing negative attached to our brand,” explained KFC Canada President Steve Langford, “Once I got involved and we actually met face to face, we found out that we had no differences of opinion about how animals should be treated.” Previously, Langford said he had visited slaughterplants to compare the electric shock technique with the gas method (CAK). “To me there is no comparison,” he remarked, noting that some birds remain conscious after the shocks.

PETA will continue to press KFC in the U.S. and elsewhere to follow suit (see: KentuckyFriedCruelty.com). "We look forward to learning whether our Canadian franchisee’s action has any positive benefit on the humane treatment of poultry,” said KFC owner Yum! Brands in a released statement. See also: http://tinyurl.com/6q3pss


FINGER LICKIN' TOFU: KFC GOES VEGAN
Globe and Mail, Josh Wingrove, June 4, 2008
http://tinyurl.com/3w5ucz

'KENTUCKY FRIED CRUELTY' COMES TO AN END
The Canadian Press, June 1, 2008
http://www.edmontonsun.com/News/Canada/2008/06/01/5739946.html

KFC CANADA AND PETA REACH AGREEMENT
World Poultry, June 2, 2008
http://www.worldpoultry.net/home/id2205-46608/kfc_canada_and_peta_reach_agreement.html

KFC CANADIAN FRANCHISEE, PETA IN ACCORD
Courier-Journal, Alex Davis, June 2, 2008
http://tinyurl.com/5ekct4

 

2. SOUTH KOREA RIOTS AGAINST U.S. BEEF

“South Korean politics are on the brink of meltdown after spiralling public hysteria over ‘mad cow’ disease in American beef unleashed a weekend of mass protests and pitched battles between [tens of thousands of] demonstrators and riot police,” reports the Times Online. The rioting follows nearly daily demonstrations since an April 18th agreement to resume imports of U.S. beef (see: http://tinyurl.com/6jw9zx ). It was banned by South Korea in December 2003 after a BSE-infected cow was discovered in Washington state. Prior to that, the country had been the third-largest importer of U.S. beef.

A pact reached in 2006 permitted only boneless beef imports from cattle under 30 months old. The imports began last year but were cancelled in October after banned tissue such as bone were found. The April 2008 agreement included virtually all type of U.S. beef and scrapped nearly all the restrictions previously imposed as a safeguard against “mad cow” disease. The agreement was required by the U.S. for its approval of a sweeping free trade agreement between the two countries. It followed a U.N. ruling, which supported the U.S. assertion that its beef is safe, and it fulfilled the agreement made by the South Korea in 2006.

In an attempt to calm the public, the South Korean government has twice delayed resumption of the imports and has requested that cattle age 30 months or older not be sent. President Bush agreed to the request but the measures to assure it are voluntary ones. This has not put the Korean public at ease. Two demonstrators have set themselves on fire in protest, and demonstrations by as many as a million people are anticipated. The entire Korean cabinet has offered to resign over the matter. A Korean delegation is visiting the U.S. but the Bush administration is refusing to renegotiate the deal: http://tinyurl.com/6c5ktc. The New York Times has published a recap of the U.S. BSE situation entitled Questions on U.S. Beef Remain: http://tinyurl.com/5vm3l2.


40,000 MARCH AGAINST US BEEF IN SOUTH KOREA OVER FEARS OF BSE
Times Online, Leo Lewis, June 8, 2008
http://tinyurl.com/5dgg9p

KOREANS TAKE TO STREET TO PROTEST AGAINST IMPORTS OF U.S. BEEF
The Canadian Press, Kwang-Tae Kim, May 26, 2008
http://www.cbc.ca/cp/health/080526/x052608A.html

VICE FARM MINISTER TO VISIT U.S. TO DISCUSS BEEF ISSUE
Yonhap News, June 9, 2008
http://tinyurl.com/5e69zx

S.KOREA DELAYS CONTROVERSIAL US BEEF IMPORTS
Agence France Presse, June 2, 2008
http://afp.google.com/article/ALeqM5jEcbd2395jMkWIJ5mP66vmxYQL5Q

BOWING TO PROTESTS, S. KOREA IMPOSES NEW CONDITIONS ON US BEEF IMPORTS
Voice of America, Kurt Achin, June 3, 2008
http://www.voanews.com/english/2008-06-03-voa11.cfm

S. KOREA CABINET OFFERS TO RESIGN OVER BEEF IMPORTS
Associated Press, Hyung-Jin Kim, June
http://ap.google.com/article/ALeqM5gliEd1Bi_qB68ysYSDK2b_vze2ygD916VLK80

 

3. EUROPEAN AUTHORITIES REJECT U.S. POULTRY IMPORT PLANS

Experts from the European Union's (E.U.) member states have rejected European Commission plans to lift a ban on imports of chicken treated with anti-microbial chemicals to decontaminate them. The plan would have lifted an 11-year ban on U.S. chicken. The Commission had argued that the chemicals have been cleared by the European Food Safety Agency, and it had proposed that the chickens be rinsed afterward and clearly labeled (requirements which U.S. poultry groups denounced: http://tinyurl.com/6csnhu ). Members of the European Parliament, however, welcomed the decision. "Member states made this decision in tune with the opinion of European consumers, who don't want to bow to American commercial pressure and sacrifice their food production standards and rules," said Monica Frassoni, co-president of the Greens/European Free Alliance Group: www.greens-efa.org The rejection has revived tensions between the U.S. and E.U., which are meeting this week for a major trade summit.


EU VETS REJECT US POULTRY PLANS
The Poultry Site, June 4, 2008
http://www.thepoultrysite.com/poultrynews/15072/eu-vets-reject-us-poultry-plans

 

4. POULTRY ANTIBIOTIC CLAIM RESCINDED

On June 2nd, Tyson Foods announced it was voluntarily rescinding its "Raised without antibiotics that impact human antibiotic resistance" claim on labels of poultry products. The next day, the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) issued a release stating that the withdrawal was mandated upon finding "that [Tyson] routinely used the antibiotic Gentamicin to prevent illness and death in chicks."

The Poultry Site provides the following background information: “In May 2007, the USDA approved Tyson’s Raised Without Antibiotic chicken label application, which noted Tyson's chicken feed ingredients include commonly-used antimicrobials known as ionophores. However, by fall USDA officials reversed their position saying they made a mistake since some organizations have narrowly classified ionophores as antibiotics, though they are not used in human medicine. In December 2007, the USDA approved a new label and subsequently issued industry guidelines for the claim ‘Chicken Raised Without Antibiotics That Impact Antibiotic Resistance in Humans.’”

Both of the labels and related marketing materials have become the subjects of a lawsuit by two poultry competitors, a petition to the USDA by three competitors, and a class action lawsuit said to have been filed on behalf of consumers. The USDA has said it will initiate a public process to review policies on “raised without antibiotics” claims for poultry. On a related note, see: http://tinyurl.com/5oqk6n

TYSON RIPS OFF ANTIBIOTIC FREE CHICKEN LABEL
The Poultry Site, June 5, 2008
http://www.thepoultrysite.com/poultrynews/15060/tyson-rips-off-antibiotic-free-chicken-label

STATEMENT BY UNDER SECRETARY FOR FOOD SAFETY DR. RICHARD RAYMOND REGARDING THE TYSON FOODS, INC. RAISED WITHOUT ANTIBIOTICS LABEL CLAIM WITHDRAWAL
USDA Food Safety and Inspection Service, June 3, 2008
http://www.fsis.usda.gov/News_&_Events/NR_060308_01/index.asp

 

5. NYT EDITORIALIZES AGAINST CONFINEMENT FARMING

Referring to two recently released reports on intensive confinement animal agriculture (see items #1 & 2: http://tinyurl.com/5shf8b ), the New York Times (NYT) published an editorial entitled The Worst Way of Farming. It states: “Millions of animals are crowded together in inhumane conditions, causing significant environmental threats and unacceptable health risks for workers, their neighbors and all the rest of us.” Attributing the “astonishing” rise in the number and size of confined animal operations to the structure of U.S. farm subsidies, the editorial states: “the so-called efficiency of industrial animal production is an illusion, made possible by cheap grain, cheap water and prisonlike confinement systems. In short, animal husbandry has been turned into animal abuse….and ha[s] helped empty and impoverish rural America.” Referring to the Pew Commission report recommendations, the Times concludes: “These are all useful guideposts for the next Congress and a new administration.”

A subsequent NYT article entitled Ranchers Prosper by Ignoring Factory-Farm Model explains: “Steaks and loins from naturally raised pigs and cattle have been an increasingly easy sell to fine restaurants and upscale supermarkets. But until now, that hasn't been true for fattier, more sinewy cuts such as pork shoulder and beef chuck that ranchers have long been forced to sell at commodity prices. The growing demand by fast-food chains for those cuts is becoming…part of the solution to marketing the [entire animal].''

Later that week the Times published an article entitled How about Slaughterhouse Tour Before Supper, Food Lover? See: http://tinyurl.com/64vkf8 and see: http://tinyurl.com/6mkoxc

THE WORST WAY OF FARMING
The New York Times, Editorial, May 31, 2008
http://www.nytimes.com/2008/05/31/opinion/31sat4.html?ref=opinion

RANCHERS PROSPER BY IGNORING FACTORY - FARM MODEL
The New York Times (The Associated Press), June 2, 2008
http://www.nytimes.com/aponline/us/AP-Farm-Scene-Grass-Fed-Fast-Food.html?_r=2&oref=slogin&oref=slogin

 

6. FARM ANIMALS ANTI-CRUELTY ACT

The Farm Animals Anti-Cruelty Act was introduced in Congress on June 5th by Congressmen Christopher Shays (R-Ct) and Jim Moran (D-Va). H. R. 6202 seeks to make a federal offense the killing, mutilation, disfigurement, torture or intentional infliction of pain or suffering, “without justification,” on an animal held for commercial use. Also prohibited would be the failure to provide food, water or shelter to farmed animals. Penalties range from $500 to $100,000, depending on the number of animals, and imprisonment of not more than one year. The bill exempts: lawful scientific or agricultural research; veterinary treatment to improve the well-being of the animal; and exhibitions such as at fairs. See: http://tinyurl.com/5hmx44

 





In This Issue








Our Sponsors

The information in this news digest does not necessarily reflect the views of the sponsors nor is anything in it meant as an endorsement by them.


Masthead

Compiled and edited by Mary Finelli, Farmed Animal Watch is a free weekly electronic news digest of information concerning farmed animal issues gleaned from an array of academic, industry, advocacy and mainstream media sources.