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January 13, 2011

HSI Disturbed by Mass Burial of Live Pigs

Humane Society International

Update, January 18, 2011: The mass culling of pigs and cattle continues in South Korea in the wake of an outbreak of foot-and-mouth disease. A similar large-scale culling of chickens and ducks has also begun in response to outbreaks of the deadly H5N1 strain of avian influenza in four provinces. Animal protection groups within South Korea have expressed concern that many of these birds might also be buried alive. HSI has sent a letter to the Embassy of the Republic of Korea in Washington, DC, expressing concern and asking them to implement more humane methods of disease control. Learn more about the relationship between factory farming and diseases such as avian influenza.

HSI is deeply disturbed by reports of pigs being buried alive in a mass culling program to control the recent foot-and-mouth disease outbreak in South Korea. Some news outlets have reported that close to one million pigs have suffered this fate. We are in contact with animal protection groups within South Korea, and are deciding upon the best response to the situation. Many of our supporters have written to express concern; we will keep you updated as we move forward.

HSI urges governments and industries to focus first on vaccination as a method of disease control. When that is not possible, the World Organisation for Animal Health has developed guidelines for less inhumane methods of killing for the purpose of disease control.

Worldwide, approximately 67.5 billion land animals are raised for food each year. A growing number of these animals are raised under conditions that do not provide for many of their most basic behavioral needs and that impose significant stress on the animals in pursuit of efficiency. Learn more about HSI’s work to reduce animal suffering in the rearing, housing, care, transportation, and slaughter of animals raised for food. We can all make a difference in the lives of farm animals by making more humane food choices.