Help End Suffering of Disabled Calves In Factory Farming

Taken from The Humane Farming Association, Campaign Against Factory Farming

The USDA’s Food Safety and Inspection Service [FSIS] has issued a proposed rule that would close a loophole in federal regulations which has long encouraged the abuse and slaughter of sick and injured [downed] calves.

The USDA is finally proposing that calves unable to stand or walk be promptly euthanized when they arrive at the slaughterhouse. In 2009, due largely to concern over bovine spongiform encephalopathy {BSE} or Mad Cow Disease, the government declared that all mature downed cattle were unfit for human consumption and must be euthanized.  This meant that their remains would be condemned rather than put into the human food chain.  Unlike their adult counterparts, sick or injured veal calves at slaughter were allowed to be set aside to see if they regained the ability to walk.  This practice encouraged slaughterhouse workers to kick, drag, shock, and use other inhumane physical means to get disabled calves to their feet for slaughter.  As most know veal calves are confined in crates to small in which to turn around, and are fed an all-liquid iron-deficient diet that makes them anemic.  These horrific living conditions cause these calves to be vulnerable to systemic and metabolic diseases that result in weak and distressed animals.  It’s not uncommon for these calves to be so frail that they collapse under their own weight during transportation or at the slaughterhouse.  This proposed rule, which would result in the immediate condemnation and euthanization of all downed calves, would significantly reduce suffering by discouraging veal producers from sending sick and disabled calves to slaughter.

Thank you for standing up for downed animals.


Please contact the USDA to tell them that sick and disabled [downed] calves should not be brutalized at the slaughterhouse in an effort to get them to their feet for slaughter.  Downed animals should not have their suffering prolonged; they should be humanely euthanized.

Please take action today! [ Note: All comments and letters must include the agency name- Food Safety and Inspection Service- and Docket number FSIS-2014-0020]

To Comment online at:

Or send letters to:

Docket Clerk, USDA, Food Safety and Inspection Services, Patriot’s Plaza 3, 1400 Independence Avenue SW, Mailstop 3782, Room 8-163A, Washington, DC 20250-3700



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