Pigs have their heads bashed in Dutch pigsties

Pigs have their heads bashed and are left with untreated open wounds in undercover footage filmed at Dutch pigsties that supply the UK

  • Animal rights group sent undercover worker to two pig farms in the Netherlands
  • He captured video exposing the filthy conditions the pigs were forced to live in
  • The footage also revealed farmers were handling pigs roughly and kicking them 
  • And the video also showed that diseased pigs with wounds were left untreated 

Horrific undercover footage has captured pigs having their heads bashed in and left with untreated wounds inside Dutch factory farms that supply the UK.

Animal Rights, a non-profit organisation, sent a man identified only as Tom to go undercover at two different farms, one in Lunteren and another in Nuenen.

The shocking footage he captured exposed the filthy conditions the pigs were forced to live in – as well as how roughly they were treated by workers.

The video shows some pigs having their heads kicked by a young boy while others have gruesome wounds on their bodies that are left untended. 

Horrific undercover footage captured the mistreatment of pigs intended for export to the UK inside factory farms in the Netherlands

Tom was immediately hired to work at the farms despite having no work experience.

Jobs he was tasked with including cutting off the tails of piglets and grinding pig teeth with a machine.

While he was doing these tasks, he filmed a farmer roughly grabbing each piglet before throwing them back into a basket.

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Tom said he had been ‘deeply touched’ by some of the things he witnesses during his time at the farms.

These included the sight of a diseased piglet who lost a large swathe of skin from its back – who walked around with the same injury the following day.

Jobs the undercover worker was tasked with including cutting off the tails of piglets and grinding pig teeth with a machine

‘Heart-rending were the moments when the mother pigs wanted to break out of the cage with all their might to get their piglets back,’ he said.

‘But perhaps even more awful were the mother pigs lying apathetically in their farrowing cage next to their stillborn piglets.’

Tom’s hidden camera footage also captured the 10-year-old nephew of a farmer kicking the heads of pigs at the Nuenen farm.

‘He likes working in the stables more than playing football,’ Tom said.

‘He handled the animals more roughly than the farmer himself.

‘When moving the pigs, the boy kicked them repeatedly, even in their heads.’

Animal Rights campaign manager Erwin Vermeulen said the pigs captured in the footage have a ‘dismal and inhumane’ existence.

A diseased piglet who had lost a large swathe of skin from its back was left untended 

‘The piglets and their mothers live above their own excrement on a concrete slatted floor in bare, often dirty pens,’ he said.

‘It is a dismal and inhumane existence.’

‘The culling of the tail and grinding of the teeth are standard practices, which are forbidden by law when they are routine.

‘The piglets are screaming during these painful actions while the mother pigs, captive between the iron bars, are left helplessly watching.’

Animal Rights spokesman Robert Molenaar said the scenes at the two pigsties are ‘unfortunately no excesses but standard practice in Dutch pig farming’.

Molenaar added that the Dutch Inspectorate drafted 77 reports and sent out 37 letters over violations and gave 21 written warnings (out of 350 inspections) to pig farms.

He added: ‘Until recently this kind of undercover footage was rarely made public in the Netherlands, which is why many consumers and politicians were left in the delusion that ‘everything is arranged quite well’ in the Netherlands.

The shocking footage exposed the filthy conditions the pigs were forced to live in at the farms

‘Now it turns out that a very great deal is wrong. The undercover footage has unleashed a lot in the Netherlands, which resulted in political questions to the Agriculture Minister.’

MP Esther Ouwehand, of the Party for Animals, has said her party will question Agriculture Minister Carola Schouten about the issue, demanding she take action to stop the animal cruelty in these pig farms.

But Molenaar said consumers also have a responsibility to act.

He said: ‘Animal Rights calls for all consumers to put meat aside during the Christmas period. Peace for animals starts on the plate of the consumer.’

According to Animal Rights, most pigs in the Netherlands are kept for the export of pork abroad, with the UK being the prime market for Dutch pig farmers.

The British Meat Processors Association (BMPA) reports that the UK is a net importer of pork – currently importing around 60 per cent of the pork the country consumes.

Together with Denmark and Germany, the Netherlands accounts for almost two-thirds of British pork imports. 

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