Hormel, the pork giant behind spam and several other meat products, keeps their pigs in gestation crates; cages barely bigger than the sows, without enough room for the animals to walk or turn around. Pigs are social, intelligent animals, and gestation crates deny them social interactions and stimulation, literally causing them to go insane.
The Humane Society of the United States explains the suffering behind spam: "Breeding pigs used by Hormel are confined in these crates for their entire four-month pregnancy, placed into another crate to give birth, then put back into a gestation crate — pregnancy after pregnancy — until they are slaughtered."
Animal scientist Temple Grandin, who is Hormel's own "animal welfare" advisor, described the extreme confinement of gestation crates as the equivalent of a person living her life in an airline seat. Grandin believes this cruel confinement needs to be phased out of the industry.
That's the trend: seven U.S. states and the European Union have passed laws to ban gestation crates. Several companies are phasing out purchases from suppliers who use gestation crates, including Burger King, Wendy's, Sonic, Quiznos, and Safeway.
Tell Hormel to end the use of gestation crates.
Photo credit: Farm Sanctuary