- Doug McMillonPresident and CEO, Walmart Stores, Inc.
- Greg ForanPresident and CEO, Walmart U.S.
- Frank YiannasVice President, Food Safety, Walmart
- Charles RedfieldExecutive Vice President, Food, Walmart U.S.
- W. Rodney McMullenChairman and CEO, Kroger
- Michael J. DonnellyExecutive Vice President of Merchandising, Kroger
- Russ RichardsonVice President of Meat and Seafood, Kroger
Walmart and Kroger: Stop Selling Meat from Abused Lambs
When I first set foot inside the largest lamb slaughterhouse in the US where as many as 1,400 lambs are killed every day, I knew I would see suffering. But the horrors I witnessed as an undercover investigator for Compassion Over Killing were beyond my worst nightmare. The image of one live baby lamb confined in a garbage can still haunts me today, but the cruelty didn’t end there. The New York Times broke the story of the footage I caught on hidden camera—the first-ever behind-the-scenes look inside a U.S. lamb slaughterhouse—exposes rampant abuse, including multiple violations of the federal Humane Methods of Slaughter Act.
At Superior Farms, a supplier to the nation’s top two food grocers, Walmart and Kroger, I painstakingly witnessed and documented innocent lambs suffering violent and gruesome deaths. Workers often improperly and ineffectively stunned these young animals, who had their throats cut multiple times with a knife and then their tails cut off while still conscious.
In fact, nearly 90% of lambs I documented kicked or thrashed their heads as their tails were sliced off, signs that even after having their throats slit, they were conscious enough to feel pain. Some lambs were still breathing, with their throats cut open, as they continued down the slaughter line.
I also saw a worker grabbing and dragging a terrified lamb by the wool, a truck driver repeatedly jabbing and shocking lambs with an electric prod for extended periods, and a herding dog who was used to viciously bite lambs, forcing them to move towards the kill floor.
Superior Farms is also pulling the wool over the eyes of consumers. On more than a dozen occasions, I documented workers changing “best by” dates on refrigerated meat labels, deceiving consumers about the freshness of these products. Lamb meat from Superior Farms is sold by both Walmart and Kroger, the nation’s leading grocery stores. These chains owe it to their customers to take a stand against cruelty and deceptive labeling by dropping Superior products from their store shelves.
Lamb consumption has dropped drastically in the US in the last 50 years, yet two million of these gentle animals continue to be slaughtered every year. Superior Farms touts its “commitment to the well-being and care of the flock” and claims that lambs are “humanely harvested.” Yet our video tells a starkly different story—showing what really happens when Superior Farms doesn't think anyone is watching. Please join compassionate consumers nationwide in calling on Kroger and Walmart to cut ties with Superior Farms as a supplier.
Scott David (Compassion Over Killing undercover investigator)
- President and CEO, Walmart Stores, Inc.
- President and CEO, Walmart U.S.
- Vice President, Food Safety, Walmart
- Executive Vice President, Food, Walmart U.S.
- Chairman and CEO, Kroger
W. Rodney McMullen
- Executive Vice President of Merchandising, Kroger
Michael J. Donnelly
- Vice President of Meat and Seafood, Kroger
As a consumer, I was horrified as I watched Compassion Over Killing’s investigative video exposing alarming food labeling practices and egregious abuse of lambs at your supplier Superior Farms, including multiple violations of the federal Humane Methods of Slaughter Act.
Compassion Over Killing’s investigator documented lambs who kicked or lifted their heads as their tails were sliced off and conscious lambs who had their throats cut multiple times. Some were still breathing as they continued down the slaughter line.
Furthermore, workers were documented changing “best by” date labels on refrigerated meat products, deceiving consumers about the freshness of these products.
Lamb consumption is drastically lower in the US today than it was 50 years ago, but two million of these gentle animals continue to be slaughtered every year. Hundreds of thousands of lambs are still slaughtered by your supplier, Superior Farms, annually as the company touts its “commitment to the well-being and care of the flock” and claims that lambs are “humanely harvested.” Yet COK’s video reveals systemic cruelty and shocking food labeling practices.
I hope you will take a stand against this egregious cruelty to young lambs and remove Superior Farms products from your store shelves. Thank you.
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