Spain: Documentation of the industrial exploitation of pigs

An investigation by Tras Los Muros ( Glass Walls )- Author: Aitor Garmendia (Photographer for Animal Liberation)

Factory. The industrial exploitation of pigs.

With a population of more than 30 million, the Spanish pig sector has established itself as the largest producer of live pigs in the European Union, and in 2020 it is expected that the number of animals sent to the slaughterhouse will exceed that of Germany, a country that in these moments ranks first.

Veterinary neglect is common to all farms visited. Animals that suffer from innumerable health problems are not treated for reasons of economic profitability. / October 2019. Castilla la Mancha.

In July 2019, a slaughterhouse and the largest pig cutting plant in Europe began its activity in Binéfar, in the province of Huesca.
It is estimated that it will lead to the death of 160,000 pigs a week. Under the relentless rhythm of production, animals suffer from systematic exploitation and institutional helplessness.

The images presented in this work as well as the description are representative of the standards by which the industrial exploitation of pigs is developed.

Between 2019 and 2020 I, Aitor Garmendia, have accessed, together with a research team made up of people who have chosen to remain anonymous, to 32 pig farms located in Castilla y León, Aragón, and Castilla-La Mancha.

In them, I have verified and documented the consequences of the structural violence that takes place under the standards of the livestock industry.

Veterinary neglect, non-compliance with the animal welfare law, and the abuses described below are not isolated cases, but rather an inherent part of industrial animal husbandry and exploitation systems.

At the factory farm

More than 95% of the pork meat consumed in Spain comes from intensive farming systems. The farms can be closed-cycle and contain all phases of production (gestation, farrowing, and fattening) in one or more locations geographically close or may be dedicated to covering

All farms operate under similar standards and are governed by the same regulations.

Regardless of their size or their structure in phases, the quality of life of the pigs is compromised in any of them, be these large farms or small facilities managed by families.

In their houses, pigs for meat production are housed on concrete floors in overcrowded and unsanitary conditions, and females selected for their reproductive capacity spend part of their lives trapped in iron frames.

Área de gestación Aragon 2019

Confinement prevents the natural behavior of pigs, which, like their ancestors, must be able to develop for their well-being. The frustration of your interests and needs leads to numerous health problems.

Unlike other species, pigs lack sweat glands, and their ability to dissipate heat is very limited. If they have the right conditions, they look for cool places, streams, and puddles to take mud baths or rest.

However, on intensive breeding farms the temperatures can be very high – something common in hot months – and given the impossibility of accessing a place to cool off, they have no choice but to wallow in their excrement.

Eye injury-Castilla-La Mancha 2020


Power, propaganda, and the right to information

The industry invests millions of euros in propaganda – part of it coming from public funds – in order to project an idea that does not conform to what actually happens.


For more…at


And I mean…It is inconceivable to be human and to be silent in the face of the torture of animals, just as it is inconceivable to fight for human rights and to be silent when people are being tortured.

This holocaust of animals is not only a reality in Spain, it is the same everywhere.

We are all responsible for bringing the truth to light.
Most consumers know what is going on behind the walls of the slaughterhouses and are silent, they suppress it or do not care.

Documentation of animal suffering in a farm factory is a thorn in their conscience, so they don’t want to be informed.
Do not present us or inform us, not even if something like this actually happens in the slaughterhouses.

And with their collaboration, they support a fascist system, one of the most inhuman in human history.

My best regards to all, Venus

Ireland’s mink to be culled and not replaced.


Ireland’s mink to be culled and not replaced 

The Republic of Ireland’s Chief Medical Officer has advised the government to cull the mink on Ireland’s three mink farms, as a precautionary measure. The government is likely to follow this advice. 

Further, it is expected that the mink farmers will not be allowed to replace the animals, so it appears that fur farming is about to end.

Official confirmation has not yet been issued but Respect for Animals understand that fur factory farming in Ireland will finally cease. There is already a commitment in the Programme for Government to phase out mink farming in Ireland.

According to the World Health Organisation,  health authorities in Denmark reported cases of Covid-19 that were caused by a mink fur farm associated strain of the novel coronavirus.

The European Centre for Disease Prevention and Control confirmed, on 12 November, that the mink Covid mutation “could also have an impact on the effectiveness of developed vaccines”.

In a letter to the Department of Agriculture, Dr Holohan, the Chief Medical Officer, said the presence of farmed minks presents “an ongoing risk to public health” if the Covid variant found in Denmark was to become “the dominant strain of the virus”.

He said all mink should be culled “as a matter of urgency”.

Respect for Animals has been a leader of the #FurFreeIreland campaign for a number of years. We are now working to get this development converted into a fur farming ban with the utmost urgency.

On Tuesday, Agriculture Minister Charlie McConalogue confirmed that they will “in due course commence the process of preparing a Bill to provide for the phased introduction of a ban on fur farming which will include a prohibition on mink farming. The Bill will make it illegal for any new fur farms to be established and will put in place phase out arrangements for the small number of current operators.”  

Campaigns Director Mark Glover said:

“The news that thousands of mink will be killed is shocking and sad. However, the fact that fur factory farming- a cruel, unjustifiable industry- will cease in Ireland has to be welcomed.

We have campaigned for a Fur Free Ireland for many years and we are finally on the brink of a fur farming ban. Thank you to our friends at NARA and all campaigners and supporters who have helped make this possible.

It is now clear that fur farming is a disaster for animal welfare and a risk to human health.

It is a shame that it has taken a devastating pandemic to bring the cruel and unnecessary fur trade to its knees, but we now must ensure that this barbaric industry is stopped once and for all.”

Read more at ‘Respect for Animals’ web site:

Ireland: mink to be culled and not replaced after Covid-19 mink mutation | Respect for Animals

UK terrorism chief calls for ‘national debate’ on criminalizing doubts about Covid-19 vaccine


The UK’s top counter-terrorism cop has suggested society stop allowing people to question the wisdom of a rapid Covid-19 vaccine rollout, regarding such skepticism to being life-threatening “misinformation.”

Met Assistant Commissioner Neil Basu has pointedly questioned whether it is “the correct thing for a society to allow” the sharing of “misinformation that could cost people’s lives” — demonizing all doubts about quickly developed Covid-19 vaccines whose potential long-term effects are not yet known and tying them to extremist radicalization efforts.

While he didn’t go so far as to call for a law to be passed banning such content, his suggestion of a “national debate” will presumably light a fire under ministers already mulling such legislation.

Basu also expressed worries about a “sharp increase in extremist material online in the last few years” during Wednesday’s press conference, warning of a “new and worrying trend in the UK” of young people being radicalized.

Officials told UK media that Islamic extremists and far-right groups were using “false claims about coronavirus” to radicalize their followers.

Social media users are already wary of the rush to roll out the vaccine were disturbed by the attendant rush to criminalize criticism of it.

Met Assistant Commissioner Neil Basu


“Am I alone in finding this more worrying than the virus itself?” one user asked.

The counter-terrorism chief’s concerns have added to the growing chorus of government entities calling for the blanket censorship – or even criminalization – of vaccine skepticism.

The Labour Party earlier this week demanded the government adopt emergency legislation to impose civil and criminal penalties on social media platforms that don’t immediately remove posts that question the safety of the jab and other “false” materials.

Labour’s Shadow Health Secretary Jonathan Ashworth demanded government “deal with some of the dangerous nonsense, nonsensical anti-vax stuff that we’ve seen spreading on social media, which erodes trust in the vaccine” even though no vaccine has yet passed review by UK health authorities and speculation from either “side” of the debate is fully hypothetical.

Meanwhile, Health Secretary Matt Hancock has refused to rule out making vaccination mandatory, and ministers are reportedly considering issuing QR codes to people who receive the jab that will allow them to attend sports, theatre, and other events.

Now we have to watch out for what we write, what we say, what we think.
We don’t live in a democracy, that is clear.
China could copy a lot from us, we are doing better than China.

My best regards to all, Venus

Denmark: Mink massacre costs ministers the job

18th November 2020

After a coronavirus mutation was found in the Danish mink, the government wanted to cull millions of fur animals. But apparently, the legal basis for this has so far been lacking.

It was now costing the Minister of Agriculture his job.

Danish Agriculture Minister Mogens Jensen has resigned after killing millions of minks.

“I informed the Prime Minister today that I want to resign from the government,” he said.

The Danish government had ordered the killing of all farmed mink because of the discovery of a mutated version of the coronavirus, without the necessary legislation for the culling of healthy animals.

“I apologize,” Jensen told the Danish broadcaster DR.

The killed minks are trucked to a military site in Denmark.

At the beginning of the month, a mutated version of the coronavirus was found on some Danish farms, which had also infected people. A total of around 15 million mink should then be killed, including healthy animals.

This means that two turbulent weeks in Denmark have reached their climax for the time being in the course of the killing of millions of fur animals.

Prime Minister Mette Frederiksen announced on November 4th that all mink in the country should be culled because the coronavirus had mutated in the animals and had already spread to humans.

There was no legal basis

The crux of the scandal: As it turned out, there was no legal basis for the mass culling.

Jensen had only admitted this several days after the measure was announced: “The government has decided that given the seriousness of the situation, it is urgent. Therefore, it was determined that it was not possible to wait for new legislation to be announced. “

In particular, the Cluster 5 variant of the virus had been classified as worrying by the Danish health institute SSI because, according to the institute, it could have a possible impact on future coronavirus vaccines.

As it turned out, the necessary legal basis was missing for the mass cull.
Jensen only admitted this several days after the announcement of the measure.

In the meantime, the government has secured a parliamentary majority for a legal framework that will legally secure the rapid step and ban mink keeping in Denmark by the end of 2021.

And I mean…We want the Prime Minister to do the same.
She pronounced the illegal order of mass murder, she is complicit.

Denmark was the world’s largest producer of mink fur up to this week, along with China.

“Copenhagen Fur”, the auction house of Danish mink breeders, has a market share of 70 percent of the mink skins sold worldwide.
In 2013, Denmark exported mink skins worth almost two billion euros.

According to the industry association Danske Minkavlere, mink farming currently employs 6,000 people and there are around 1,100 mink farms in the country, most of them in North and West Jutland.

The chairman of the branch association Danske Minkavlere whines: “The employees are now losing their animals and their livelihoods. The work of decades is now in vain. We had built up the world’s best and healthiest mink population in Denmark.”

This is how you can call the concentration camps for fur animals, built-up work! If you make millions from it.

Now the Danish fur mafia has come to an end.
The Dutch have already banned mink breeding, as have Poland.
Only Finland remains and then we will most likely see an EU ban on this bloody industry.

Thank you, Corona!

My best regards to all, Venus

Australia: Australian farm to hold 50,000 crocodiles for luxury Hermès goods questioned by animal welfare groups.

This is a bit more on the issue of Australian crocodile farming that was covered by Venus on 12/11/20 –

More from ‘The Guardian’, London/

Australian farm to hold 50,000 crocodiles for luxury Hermès goods questioned by animal welfare groups | Environment | The Guardian

Australian farm to hold 50,000 crocodiles for luxury Hermès goods questioned by animal welfare groups

Farm to supply skins to make handbags and shoes would be one of the biggest in Australia under plan approved by Northern Territory government

The high-end French fashion brand Hermès wants to build one of Australia’s biggest crocodile farms in the Northern Territory that would hold up to 50,000 saltwater crocodiles to be turned into luxury goods such as handbags and shoes.

But the proposal has come under fire from animal welfare groups, who say other fashion brands have moved away from using exotic animal skins on cruelty grounds. Advocates told Guardian Australia they had concerns about the welfare of the crocodiles, and that farming animals for luxury goods was “no longer fashionable.”

The territory, a significant global supplier of crocodile skins, is already home to several crocodile farms owned by major fashion brands.

Northern Territory crocodile industry figure Mick Burns is leading the proposal on a former fruit farm near Darwin purchased earlier this year by the company PRI Farming, of which he is a director.

The NT government has already granted development approval for the project, with documents showing the farm would include an egg incubator laboratory, a hatchery, and growing pens, as well as wastewater treatment plants and a solar farm.

According to documents submitted to the territory’s Environmental Protection Authority, the farm would employ 30 people and build from an initial 4,000 crocodiles to 50,000, which the ABC has reported would make it one of the biggest crocodile farms in Australia.

An EPA statement to the Guardian said the project had been granted environmental approval, and that PRI had also indicated it would apply for a wildlife trade permit.

Dr Jed Goodfellow, a senior policy officer at RSPCA Australia, said the society remained opposed to killing of any animal “where the purpose of their death is primarily to produce a non-essential luxury item like fur or skin”.

Continue reading

EU: How to revise the Broiler Directive: science and best corporate practices lead the way to improve the lives of broiler chickens.

How to revise the Broiler Directive: science and best corporate practices lead the way to improve the lives of broiler chickens

19 November 2020

Press Release

Today a groundbreaking new report was launched presenting the first comprehensive scientific overview on the welfare of broiler chickens. Science and best corporate practices show improvements are feasible, urgent and should inform future EU legislation.

For immediate release: Brussels 19/11/2020

On November 19th, the Intergroup on the welfare and conservation of animals organised the event From minimum legal standards to “good lives” What needs to change for broiler chickens in the EU? 

Broiler chickens are the most numerous terrestrial farmed animals in the EU: 7.4 billion were slaughtered in 2018, of which the vast majority coming from intensive farming systems. While minimum standards for the protection of broiler chickens are laid down in various pieces of EU legislation, the current rules are clearly insufficient to guarantee broiler chicken welfare as they fail to address the main problems that are intrinsic to the industry. 

The European Commission is going to propose a revision of the current animal welfare acquis as part of the EU Farm to Fork strategy, and this meeting presented the science and practices that can inspire new standards for higher-welfare broiler chicken rearing. We asked six independent researchers to present the available scientific evidence on the welfare issues experienced by broiler chickens, from breeding to slaughter: a comprehensive report, launched during the event, entitled The welfare of broiler chickens in the EU: from science to action.

The report co-authors also shared their ideas for the future of broiler chicken farming in a short publication entitled A vision for the future broiler farming.

Policy makers will need to have answers and see concrete solutions to propose new science-based legislation fit for purpose and for the future. What needs to change to give broiler chickens good lives? The report, first of its kind, presents concrete science-based solutions: using slower-growing higher-welfare breeds, providing the right rearing environment, protecting parent birds and newly hatched chicks, best practices around transport and slaughter, and including wider societal issues. 

In the EU every year we rear billions of fast-growing broiler chickens. For the most part, these social, inquisitive and intelligent birds are deprived of the possibility to enjoy good welfare, let alone experience “good lives”. The science is clear, and this new report confirms that it is time to move to slower-growing breeds and higher welfare systems and to update relevant EU legislation. The coming years offer a very important window of opportunity for us MEPs to accelerate such change for broiler chickens and other farmed animals, thanks to the objectives of the Farm to Fork Strategy. I am personally committed to making this happen.

Anja Hazekamp MEP (GUE/NGL, NL), Vice-Chair of the Committee on the Environment, Public Health and Food Safety, and President of the Intergroup on the Welfare and Conservation of Animals

The economic and animal welfare benefits of adopting higher welfare rearing systems using slower-growing breeds are clear. This will require designing a successful supply chain and involving consumers in the transition, while also taking into account sustainability. The audience had the opportunity to virtually visit Nijkamp Farm, a state of the art facility for higher-welfare broiler rearing, and heard from its owner Robert Nijkamp how animal welfare can meet sustainability. 

What we need is a paradigm shift, currently chicken is marketed as a cheap and ever-present commodity. As the report highlights, science and market opportunities make it possible to change the lives for broiler chickens. The Broiler Directive is not fit for purpose to make this happen, that’s why it should be revised to include breeding objectives for health and welfare, introduce animal welfare rules for broiler breeders, and improve rearing conditions for all broiler chickens. 

Reinke Hameleers, CEO, Eurogroup for Animals


Download The welfare of broiler chickens in the EU: from science to action

Download A vision for the future broiler farming

USA: President Elect Biden: Restore Crucial Protections for Threatened Gray Wolves.

Although we are based in England and Germany (Europe); we have always given our support in calling for protection of the Gray wolves in the United States.

Click here to see all our past involvement on this:

Fortunately, with new President elect Mr Biden; there is now a chance to once again give Gray wolves the protection they deserve that has been demolished by the Trump administration.  We urge you please to give your support to the petition which is provided in the following link; and get back from the president elect the protection that wolves deserve.

Trump does not give a damn about the environment or animal protection; that is why we are more than happy to see him throw all the toys out of the pram; have numerous tantrums and be resigned to the (ex) presidential history books.  We don’t want people who dismiss science for the environment or global warming; just the same as they dismiss animal welfare and protection legislation.

We are sure that with Mr. Biden, things will be much better.  Please sign and pass on the petition, thank you.

Petition Link:


Target: Joseph R. Biden, President-elect, United States of America

Goal: Demand restoration of protected status for gray wolves.

Trump administration officials have officially stripped threatened gray wolf populations throughout most of the United States of their protection under the Endangered Species Act, leaving them vulnerable to greater hunting and predation even as their numbers were recovering from centuries of destructive human activity. Gray wolves are an essential part of many ecosystems across North America, but human settlement, pollution, hunting, and shrinking habitats have destroyed populations throughout much of their historical range.

The revocation of protected status is based on the claim that more than 6,000 wolves now live in wild populations. However, these exist in only limited areas in the northern United States, and wildlife experts say that removing federal protections may severely hinder the gray wolves’ ability to recover outside of these areas. Critics have pointed out the suspicious timing of this decision as the 2020 election winds down. Demand that President-elect Joe Biden pledge to restore protected status to gray wolves to ensure their complete recovery in the regions they once inhabited.


Dear Mr. President-elect,

The gray wolf was once an essential part of ecosystems across North America, helping to control pest populations and provide balance to numerous delicate food chains. Once near extinction, they have made a partial recovery, but that progress could soon be destroyed by the outgoing Trump administration. It falls to you to provide the protection needed by gray wolves to ensure a complete recovery in the coming months as you take up your duties. I urge you to act quickly to save our threatened wildlife.


[Your Name Here]

Photo credit: dalliedee