Tyson Foods in a letter sent January 8 notified hog farmers who are suppliers for Tyson Foods of animal welfare measures the company has established and urged the growers to follow them. The Tyson Foods animal welfare measures are being taken as part of the ongoing Tyson Foods animal well-being program and reflect input the company has received from its Animal Well-Being Advisory Panel, customers, farmers and industry experts.
The steps also reflect Tyson Foods' continuing efforts to balance the expectations of consumers with the realities of today's hog farming business.
Tyson Foods contract hog growers were notified the company was increasing the number of third-party sow farm audits conducted through its FarmCheck program. Tyson Foods also urged its growers to implement the following animal well-being steps:
- Use video monitoring in their sow farms to increase oversight and decrease biosecurity risks
- Stop using manual blunt force as a primary method of euthanizing sick or injured piglets
- Support the use of pain mitigation (such as anesthetic or analgesic) for tail docking and castration of piglets
- Improve housing for pregnant sows by focusing on the quality and quantity of space provided, including urging all future sow barn construction or remodeling to allow for pregnant sows of all sizes to stand, lie down, stretch their legs and turn around.