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Violence against lambs

An investigation by Essere Animali in Sardinia reveals a widespread system of illegalities and abuse in the lamb production chain. Help us stop this violence.

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Our investigators used hidden cameras to document lamb production in Sardinia, the region with the highest number of sheep raised in Italy.
They inspected twenty farms in all provinces, filming practices that are banned because they cause animal suffering as well as shock confessions from farmers who admit to killing lambs in times of low demand for their meat, as it does not make economic sense to raise them.
Serious irregularities were also found in a large slaughterhouse, despite the presence of veterinarians. The lambs, only a month old, are forced to watch their fellows die. Some have to endure the pain of electrical stunning twice as the workers wait too long to slit their throats and they regain consciousness in the meantime, while others are killed while still conscious.

We reported those responsible to the authorities and also involved the Health Protection Agency (ATS Sardinia) to report the widespread diffusion of the illegalities found. In order to achieve real change, however, the animals will also need your help.

At Easter, and every day of the year. Choose not to eat them.

WHAT WE DOCUMENTED

HUNG BY THEIR LEGS

Weighing animals by suspending them, although a widespread practice, is illegal. This is done before the lambs are transported to the slaughterhouse and they can even be left hanging by their legs for up to ten minutes, while an ear is pierced and a tag is applied. However, the law prohibits hanging animals by the legs as it causes them pain and stress.

Graphic images Click to watch

SLAUGHTERED WHILE STILL CONSCIOUS

Poor slaughter management causes serious suffering to the animals. Avoidable pain or anxiety should be avoided by law, but lambs see their fellows killed in front of them. The slaughter should take place immediately after effective stunning, but after just 50 seconds the lambs will regain consciousness. If the worker notices, he will stun them again with an electric shock. Others have their throats slit while they are still conscious.

SEPARATED FROM THEIR MOTHERS

The production of lamb is closely linked to the production of sheep milk, which is mainly used for cheese. In order to produce milk, sheep must have given birth to lambs. If these are female, they will be reared for milk just like their mothers. If they are male, they will be killed for meat just 30 days after birth. When they are transported to the slaughterhouse, the animals cry out in distress at the separation.

AUDIO SHOCK FROM FARMERS

Our investigators filmed several farmers confirming that they kill lambs in times of low demand for meat, because it is not profitable to raise them. This is a serious crime that we have reported to the authorities.

The numbers

Resource: Istat 2020 - BDN 2020

Our investigations in defence of lambs

Inside a slaughterhouse where lambs are killed for Easter

April 2019

Former slaughterhouse workers also contact us to ask us to disseminate images that they have filmed, to initiate a debate about the brutality of a process that is hidden from public view. The video shows the slaughter of hoggets, animals just a few weeks older than lambs. These are also killed in increased numbers at Easter.

The terrible slaughter of lambs for Easter

March 2018

By means of hard and courageous work, our investigators placed multiple hidden cameras in two lamb slaughterhouses located in the Marche region. The footage once again reveals practices and actions that contravene the law, with animals roughly unloaded from trucks, stunned using ineffective instruments and having their throats slit in full view of each other.

For lambs, this is Easter

April 2017

Broadcast by TG1 and seen by millions of people, this investigation that took place in various Italian slaughterhouses documents the slaughter of lambs in the run-up to Easter. Our investigators filmed various violations of the law including group slaughter and inadequate stunning and restraint practices, with animals struggling in terror.

Behind the walls of a lamb slaughterhouse

March 2015

For years, we have been showing the world that slaughter is a cruel operation that causes extreme suffering. We observed various irregularities in this first investigation inside an Italian slaughterhouse: the lambs are caught roughly and wait their turn without being able to escape the sight of the killing of their peers.

HELP US TO SHOW THE WORLD WHAT’S REALLY GOING ON!

Thanks to our team of investigators, millions of people are discovering the reality of abuse and cruelty in farms and slaughterhouses. Our work saves animals and needs your support.

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PER UNA RIFORMA DELLE LEGGI SULLA PROTEZIONE DEGLI ANIMALI

Destinatari

Presidente del Consiglio, Mario Draghi

Ministro delle Politiche Agricole Alimentari e Forestali, Stefano Patuanelli

Ministero dell'Ambiente e della Tutela del Territorio e del Mare, Roberto Cingolani

Ministero della Salute, Roberto Speranza

Presidente della Camera dei Deputati, Roberto Fico

Presidente del Senato, Maria Elisabetta Alberti Casellati

L’organizzazione Essere Animali negli ultimi anni ha diffuso diverse indagini realizzate all’interno di allevamenti intensivi e stabilimenti di macellazione italiani, alcune svolte in collaborazione con importanti organi di informazione internazionali, allo scopo di documentare le condizioni degli animali allevati per l’alimentazione. Durante tali indagini, portate a termine con un capillare lavoro di monitoraggio con telecamere nascoste e infiltrati all’interno degli allevamenti, sono state puntualmente filmate violazioni alla normativa sulla protezione degli animali e alle norme del codice penale.

Le indagini di Essere Animali hanno mostrato:
  • violenze inferte dal personale dell’allevamento durante gli spostamenti degli animali o quando questi oppongono resistenza ai trattamenti, come colpi con tubi di ferro, utilizzo improprio di taser elettrico, sollevamento con muletto delle mucche a terra, calci e lanci degli animali di piccola taglia;
  • mutilazioni effettuate senza l’utilizzo di anestesia e analgesia e senza la presenza di un medico veterinario oltre l’età consentita dalla legge e il taglio sistematico della coda dei suinetti, una pratica illegale ma diffusa in quasi tutti gli allevamenti italiani;
  • animali agonizzanti lasciati morire di stenti o uccisi in modo brutale dagli operai dell’allevamento, senza l’applicazione delle corrette disposizioni sull’abbattimento d’emergenza degli animali malati;
  • uccisioni di gruppo all’interno degli stabilimenti di macellazione, con animali che assistono alla morte dei loro simili e l’utilizzo di pratiche di stordimento inefficaci.
Per questi maltrattamenti sono state presentate diverse denunce alle autorità competenti ma la frequenza di tali episodi, filmati nella quasi totalità delle aziende oggetto d’indagine scelte a campione sul territorio nazionale, anche tra fornitori di prodotti DOP, mi spinge a esprimervi la mia profonda preoccupazione. Accanto a queste violazioni di legge, le indagini di Essere Animali hanno inoltre mostrato tipologie e pratiche di allevamento che, pur essendo ora legali, sono causa di indiscussa sofferenza fisica e psicologica per gli animali, tra cui:
  • utilizzo di gabbie in cui gli animali trascorrono buona parte o tutta la loro vita;
  • elevate densità quando gli animali sono allevati "a terra" o in recinti;
  • castrazione chirurgica dei suinetti e debeccaggio delle galline uccisione tramite macerazione dei pulcini considerati inutili ai fini dell’allevamento;
  • separazione alla nascita delle madri dai cuccioli per la produzione di latte.
Chiedo quindi che sia intrapreso un processo di riforma legislativo che:
  • vieti l’utilizzo, anche parziale, delle gabbie;
  • vieti ogni mutilazione così come l’uccisione dei pulcini maschi, perfettamente sani ma considerati non produttivi dall’industria zootecnica;
  • metta fine ai sussidi pubblici al settore zootecnico;
  • porti all’inasprimento delle pene per il maltrattamento degli animali e per le altre violazioni delle normative di protezione, prevedendo nei casi più gravi la revoca delle autorizzazioni e l’interdizione dall’attività;
  • instauri un sistema di controllo negli allevamenti, durante il trasporto e nelle fasi di macellazione assolutamente più efficace di quello adottato sinora;
  • riformuli le densità di allevamento, concedendo agli animali più spazio per muoversi, anche all’aperto, e con la presenza di arricchimenti ambientali;
  • preveda sistemi di allevamento che permettano agli animali di soddisfare i propri bisogni etologici in funzione dell’età e della specie, in concerto con le organizzazioni per i Diritti Animali.
Grazie, la tua firma è importante
Ora condividi questa petizione per rendere ancora più efficace la tua partecipazione.

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