Johnsonville Sausage: Stop Being Cruel to Pigs!
  • Petitioned Ralph Stayer
  • Responded

This petition was delivered to:

Ralph Stayer
Vice President
Kevin Ladwig
Vice President
Dale Arnold
Vice President
Todd Pogorzelski
See response
Vice President
Steve Johnson
Director of Supply Chain
Dean Blanke
Director of Foodservice
Gary Kolling

Johnsonville Sausage: Stop Being Cruel to Pigs!

    1. Gina Stuessy
    2. Petition by

      Gina Stuessy


May 2013


I decided to start a petition on in March and since then you and 73,044 people signed asking Johnsonville to stop confining pigs in small crates. And guess what? We won! The company recently, quietly, posted on its website that it “will be working with (its) pork suppliers to transition from traditional gestation stall housing, to alternative pregnant sow housing.” This happened because of your kindness and dedicate as consumers. And thanks to support from The Humane League getting my petition some attention, I know this really will make a difference for so many animals. Thank you for standing on the side of mercy and compassion for animals by signing my petition. We did this together!

As a life-long Wisconsin resident and animal lover, I was not happy to hear that one of our state's companies, Johnsonville Sausages, works with factory farms that trap pigs in tiny, cruel gestation crates. Gestation crates are 2' by 7' cages that are used to confine a pregnant sow during her months of gestation, meaning that virtually all of her life will be spent in a box barely larger than her body, unable to even turn around or stretch her legs. Animal science expert Temple Grandin said that this practice is the same as "asking a sow to live in an airline seat." 

Pigs are extremely intelligent animals that are just as smart, unique, and curious as the dogs and cats that live with us at home. These social animals are so intelligent that they have even learned to play simple video games! The pigs that Johnsonville keeps in tiny cages, though, suffer from boredom and frustration every day of their lives, and they develop coping mechanisms like biting on their bars and chewing obsessively. These animals will spend nearly their entire lives inside of a cage that is barely larger than their bodies.

Consumers are not happy about gestation crates, and government and industry are starting to respond. Keeping these large, highly intelligent animals in tiny crates is so inhumane that it is already considered criminal animal cruelty in all of the European Union. It is even illegal to use this practice in 9 states in the USA! Voters have had the choice on several occasions, and every time they have voted to ban gestation crates. Additionally, some of the largest companies have already pledged to drop crates: McDonald's, Burger King, Subway, Denny's, and dozens more. Even Johnsonville's direct competition and neighbor, Oscar Mayer, has made a pledge to phase out gestation crates.

It's time for Johnsonville to stop lagging behind their competitors and their customers. Help out the pigs by signing this petition, and let Johnsonville know that gestation crates have got to go!

Recent signatures


    1. Reached 50,000 signatures
    2. Decision-maker Todd Pogorzelski responds:

      Todd Pogorzelski

      Another Attempt at it.

    3. Reached 25 signatures


    Reasons for signing

    • JoAnn Ellis BASEHOR, KS
      • about 1 year ago

      Pigs have feeling and are intelligent animals and need to be treated humanely! I do not buy Johnsonville sausage!

    • Debra Adimey LAS VEGAS, NV
      • about 1 year ago

      To be held in these cages days and hours on end is horrifying

    • Ksenia Nechesanova Мурманск, RUSSIAN FEDERATION
      • about 1 year ago

      The animals also have souls and feelings!

      • about 1 year ago

      Because it is cruel just for the sake of money.You people just try and live in a cage just overnight.see how much fun it is and let the sows out.Do you have NO HEART AT ALL?? these pigs nurse and nurse and the sow needs to get away sometimes/ help the sows

    • Rachel Steinhardt CHINCOTEAGUE, VA
      • about 1 year ago

      animal welfare and disease control


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