Cruel UK Factory Farms in Flagrant Breach of EU Animal Welfare Laws

Please sign and share to end pig pain in the UK and the EU

Today, in the UK, millions of piglets are painfully castrated, have their tails cut or burned off, and their teeth clipped or ground away. Piglets raised in barren and overcrowded environments undergo routine tail docking and tooth clipping in breach of EU legislation. The routine tail docking and tooth clipping of pigs has been illegal in the EU for more than 10 years. Yet, according to a recent report by AHDB Pork, 70% of pigs in the UK are still tail-docked, clearly indicating that routine tail-docking is widespread. 

Legislation requires that farmers address inadequate environmental conditions and management systems before resorting to tail docking and tooth clipping – mutilations which are only necessary in poor farm systems. Sadly, not enough has been done to ensure adequate environmental enrichment – another requirement of the legislation is to provide permanent access to a sufficient quantity of manipulable materials - or to ensure pig management meets best practices. 

It is the responsibility of Member States to ensure implementation of EU Directives. Please use the link below to email your minister asking them to take immediate action so that appropriate manipulable materials are provided to all pigs, and to draft a roadmap for phasing out routine tail docking and tooth-clipping. 

Across Europe 77 million male piglets continue to be painfully castrated every year, despite the fact that more humane methods exist. This is not commonly practised on UK pigs. However, several products that the UK imports are obtained from pigs that are systematically castrated without anaesthesia and analgesia. It is the case of pigs that are raised to produce cured hams in Spain and Italy, as well as several other imported products that require pigs to reach heavy live weights at slaughter. 

This is in stark contrast to all available scientific evidence showing that surgical castration is very painful when practiced without anaesthesia and pain relief, also when carried out on very young piglets. 

More humane and sustainable alternatives, such as keeping entire males or vaccination against boar taint, should be used instead. Call on agricultural ministers to help us change this. If you’re from outside the EU you can also sign. The EU exports pigs and pork products to every country in the world, so international trade also drives these mutilations. Act now to end pig pain. Please sign and share >>>

Happy pigs in a natural environment - how it should be...