Target: Tom Vilsak, Secretary of Agriculture
Goal: Roll back program that reduced number of government inspectors in hog slaughterhouses, endangering both animals and the food supply.
More animals are being brutalized during the already scary slaughter process due to a government-approved pilot program aimed at allowing meat processors greater control over the slaughter process. The HACCP-Based Inspection Models Project (HIMP) program reduced the number of federal inspectors on the processing line from seven to three. Having fewer inspectors does mean the process moves more quickly, but it also means hogs are often killed without first being made unconscious.
HIMP also endangers food safety. Prior to HIMP, the responsibility for sorting out diseased and otherwise contaminated carcasses fell to government inspectors. After HIMP, the responsibility shifted to meat plant workers who are paid by the plant, leaving room to hide violations, speed up the process by disregarding safety controls, and potentially tainting the food supply.
Several independent studies have found that meat processing plants participating in HIMP are more focused on speeding up production than on animal or food safety. Although the USDA argues that all federally inspected plants, whether they participate in HIMP or not, must comply with the Humane Methods of Slaughter of Act, statements and footage from an undercover investigator at one plant would indicate otherwise.
The investigation, conducted by Compassion Over Killing at the Quality Pork Processors (QPP) hog processing plant in Austin, MN captures video of hogs being slaughtered alive and bleeding out while squealing in pain. Tell the USDA to repeal HIMP and prevent such horrifying actions.
Dear Mr. Vilsak,
In an effort to save money and reduce slaughter process times, the USDA has sponsored a program that allows brutalizing animals in the slaughter line and endangers food safety. As part of the HACCP-Based Inspection Models Project (HIMP) program, federal inspectors on the processing line were reduced from seven to three, leaving plant employees to inspect for and remove tainted carcasses, hide safety violations, and possibly taint the food supply.
Studies conducted by independent sources reveal that plants participating in the HIMP program are more focused on speeding up processing times than on food safety or preventing animal cruelty, despite requirements in the Humane Methods of Slaughter Act.
An undercover investigator at the Quality Pork Processors (QPP) hog processing plant in Austin, MN, which supplies Hormel, recorded video footage of hogs being killed while still conscious and bleeding to death in horrible agony. We demand HIMP be repealed for the protection of animals and the food supply.
[Your Name Here]
Photo credit: Montag Zen