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Bill would give pigs more room

by 5m Editor
15 March 2007, at 9:10am

SALEM - It's common practice for U.S. pork producers to confine a 250- to 350-pound pregnant pig in an aluminum enclosure 2 feet wide by 7 feet long.

Sows remain in these so-called "gestation stalls" for months. They can lie down but not turn around. Food and water are placed at the head, where they cannot be contaminated by the wastes that come out the back.

The animals can see their neighbors but they cannot bite them, as cantankerous hogs sometimes do.

Animal abuse or sound husbandry?

Oregon lawmakers are being asked to answer that question. At the same time, a spokesman for the world's largest pork producer says the industry is changing regardless of what government dictates.

Scheduled for public hearing on Friday, an Oregon Senate bill would outlaw the "restrictive confinement" of either a pregnant sow or a calf raised for veal. The bill is similar to ballot measures that have passed and become law in Arizona and Florida and to bills pending before 15 other state legislatures this year.

Source: OregonLive.com

5m Editor