Tuesday, July 09, 2013

‘Cochon de lait’ or Pepperoni?

Well, you can choose either, but this is how the raw material is made.
In a modern piggery a sow will birth, nurse and raise an average of nine piglets. She will be kept pregnant as much as possible- most of her life that is. After her piglets are weaned away, a hormone injection makes the sow rapidly "cycle" so that she will be ready to be artificially inseminated again only in three weeks.
Four out of the five times a sow will spend the sixteen weeks of her pregnancy confined in a "gestation crate" so small that she will not be able to turn around. Her bone density will decrease because of the lack of movement. There is no bedding provided and blackened, pus-filled sores from chafing in the crate are common.
In nature, a sow would spend much of her time before giving birth foraging and would build a nest of grass, leaves and straw. This urge of a sow is curtailed in the crate making her very restless.
To avoid excessive weight gain and keep feed costs low, the crated sow is put on a restricted diet and is often hungry. In nature pigs use different areas for sleeping and defecating, this is prevented when the sow is crated.
As per a study by the European commission's Scientific Veterinary committee; pigs in crates show weakened bones, cardiovascular problems, urinary infection and a reduction of muscle mass so severe that it affects the pig's ability to lie down.
7 to 15% of the breeding sows typically die from this confinement. When the piglets are hatched, the mothers suffering has indeed transferred to them. They are born with deformities. Common congenital ones are cleft palate, hermaphroditism, inverted nipples, no anus, splayed legs, tremors and hernias. Inguinal hernias are routinely corrected during the time of castration. In the first forty-eight hours, their tails and "needle teeth" are cut off without any pain relief. The piglets are then injected with iron, since the mother's milk lacks it, because of intensive breeding. In 10 days the testicles of the male is torn off without pain relief (this apparently improves the flavour of the meat).
In nature, piglets wean from the mother in 15 weeks, in a factory farm; they are weaned in 12- 15 days. They are then fed dried blood plasma (waste product of the slaughter house) and since the piglets cannot digest the solid food properly, pharmaceuticals are fed to them to prevent diarrhoea.
These piglets are kept in cages stacked one on top of another. Faeces and urine from higher cages falls on the animals below. Once they are grown too big for the cages, they are moved to a tightly packed pen. Overcrowding ensures the pigs don't move and put on more weight with less feed. A barrage of antibiotics, hormones and other drugs keep the pigs alive till they are taken for slaughter.
Bon Appetite, hope you enjoy your, disease infested, medicine laced, chemical infused pork dish. You truly deserve to win fear factor.

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