Stop the Transport Trauma, says New Campaign

CANADA - A global campaign launched today uses undercover video footage, collected by a coalition of welfare groups, to demonstrate the desperate conditions of long-distance live animal transport.
calendar icon 19 February 2008
clock icon 3 minute read
The campaign comes a-mid a public outcry concerning the haulage of pigs from Alberta in Canada to Hawaii. Protesters want to put an end to the practice, which it says in uneconomic and unnecessary.

The World Society for the Protection of Animals, which carried out year-long investigations to support this campaign, says the suffering that these animals go through is quite appalling.

"We treat our furniture with more respect," said Melissa Tkachyk, programs officer with WSPA Canada.
According to the Canadian Press, WSPA, which represents many welfare groups, wants to see an end to the long-distance transport of live animals.

The Handle With Care will expose the horrendous conditions that animals are subjected to during long-distance journeys. And the group has flagged up the Alberta-Hawaii route as one of the worst

About 15,000 pigs are stuffed into containers each year and trucked 6,000 kilometres from Lethbridge, Alberta to Hawaii, via Calif.
A trip can last from a week to nine days, and WSPA says that shipping live animals vast distances makes little sense. It says livestock should be raised and slaughtered locally, then shipped as frozen meat - a practice they say would also offer economic benefits close to home.

Rule Changes

Canada has rules regarding the humane transportation of live animals, but the 30-year-old regulations are of no force and effect once the border is crossed, a situation the Canadian Food Inspection Agency wants to remedy.

Federal Agriculture Minister Gerry Ritz said the agency is proposing changes that would ban the export of live animals if transportation conditions anywhere along the route fail to meet Canadian standards.

"It is unacceptable for animals to suffer and to die under inhumane conditions," Ritz said in a December letter to several of the animal-rights groups, including one based in Honolulu.

The Handle with Care investigation also uncovered severe suffering inflicted on animals on other international journeys, which activists say could become breeding grounds for the spread of diseases.

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