The SPCA says it’s annual list of shame mirrors New Zealand’s violent society.
“Violence towards animals both co-occurs and is a predictor of violence towards humans”, says Robyn Kippenberger, National Chief Executive of the Royal New Zealand SPCA. “The sheer level of violence meted out on animals by some of the perpetrators in the cases in this year’s List of Shame is shocking, and underlying of wider issues in New Zealand.”
The Royal New Zealand SPCA, in partnership with Women’s Refuge, recently released research into the strong link between animal cruelty and domestic and family violence in New Zealand. This study, ‘Pets as Pawns’, showed that 50% of women interviewed had witnessed animal cruelty as part of their experience of domestic violence and 25% said their children had witnessed violence against animals. The research also revealed that one in three women surveyed reported delaying leaving violent relationships because they feared their pets and other animals would be killed or tortured. . .
Abuse is always wrong be it to people or animals and the list is truly shameful.
You can download the list here if you’ve the stomach for sickening reading.
Free-range hen farms are often touted as superior to those which keep their birds in cages and the eggs attract a premium price.
But the SPCA rightly points out that free-range is no guarantee of good welfare.
Recently a free-range layer hen farm in Martinborough was abandoned by the farmers. Many hens were left neglected, to fend for themselves. The SPCA wants to alert New Zealand consumers that term “free-range” is no guarantee of good animal welfare but simply a marketing term.
Robyn Kippenberger, National Chief Executive of the Royal New Zealand SPCA, confirms there are no legal definitions of any farming methods in New Zealand so unless farms are audited and checked regularly against specified standards there will always be room for poor welfare.
“Don’t be tricked by clever and confusing labelling of products” says Ms Kippenberger
“Marketing terms “free-to-roam”, “free-range” or “free-farmed” are no guarantee of good animal welfare without independent auditing and a third party trusted certification mark. Poor farming practices can lead to neglect such as seen in the free range farm in Martinborough. Events like this bring the whole industry into question”
The SPCA National Blue Tick accreditation scheme offers a system of specific standards and auditing to farmers wishing to ensure consumer confidence in their animal welfare practices. The Blue Tick logo on eggs, pork and chicken identifies these products have been farmed to high SPCA welfare requirements. Independent auditors visit farms regularly and have contractual agreement to spot audit without notice. Part of this transparent process makes the farming standards applied by farmers and auditors available for consumers to download from the Royal New Zealand SPCA website. http://rnzspca.org.nz/bluetick/blue-tick-standards
Lots of terms used in marketing to differentiate produce and products which are supposedly kinder on stock or the environment are empty words which don’t necessarily mean anything.
They’re designed to sell by salving the consciences of gullible consumers but there is no guarantee that the farm practices and methods of production live up to the marketing message.