Farmers fed their hogs ground up piglet intestines … but, um, for a good cause?
Well, this is horrifying. A bunch of piglets at a hog farm contracted “porcine epidemic diarrhea virus,” which sounds bad enough in and of itself. But then, after they died, the farmers used their intestines to inoculate grown pigs against the disease. Which is slightly better than feeding the grown pigs baby pig innards just all willy-nilly, BUT STILL. Is there really no better way to do this??
There’s video, but, assuming you don’t want to watch it, NPR reports:
In this video, we learn what happens to the piglets at Iron Maiden Hog Farm in Owensboro, Ky., that succumbed to the virus: The animals’ intestines are ground up and fed, as a “smoothie” — as [Humane Society of the U.S.] dubs it — back to the sows, which could be their own mothers. (The exact size of the farm is unknown, but the barn shown in the video houses about 2,400 sows.)
We just want to highlight “which could be their own mothers” here. Because why stop at cannibalism when you can have incestuous cannibalism?
The farmers say this is “the only option they’ve got to keep the dreaded PEDV from decimating herds and the whole of the U.S. hog supply,” NPR says. And we believe that’s true, if you’re talking about the hog supply as it’s raised by big, industrial farms. All we can say is … we’re not buying cheap bacon ever again.
Get Grist in your inbox