We have always felt that Global Animal Partnership has been a deceptive marketing tool for Whole Foods. It's profitable #HumaneWashing that dissuades consumers from confronting the reality behind their choices. Many animal welfare groups that originally signed on with them have since pulled out once they realized their relationships were being used to benefit Whole Foods' bottom line and not the animals. Investigations have shown that even the lauded Step 5 rating is not "humane." See the story from Civil Eats here.
Described by Whole Foods as a humane family farm, investigators found animals freezing to death, and rescued one baby from the abusive situation at a Colorado factory farm. See the video from DxE on Facebook.
Whole Foods Market has said its representations do not mean that its “meat is treated more humanely” than industry standards. Diestel Family Ranch, one of Whole Foods’ star meat suppliers, has argued that its ads were not misleading because there is no “standard for measuring whether something is thoughtful or unthoughtful, sustainable or unsustainable, farm or factory, and/or family or large business.” Read more from Sentient Media here.
“We believe ordinary Americans feel compassion for animals. That’s why they are willing to pay a premium for what they think is ‘humane’ meat,” said Diestel investigator Priya Sawhney. “But the truth is the birds at Diestel’s farms suffer tremendously.” Read more from Daily Rocket News here.
The North American Meat Institute, whose members include WalMart & Whole Foods, said enforcing Proposition 12 would hurt producers and consumers. Proposition 12, or the Prevention of Cruelty to Farm Animals Act, sets minimum space requirements for calves raised for veal, breeding pigs and egg-laying hens, and bans the sale of raw veal, pork or eggs from animals enclosed in too little space. Read more from Reuters here. Please note that at the same time Whole Foods & Amazon are attempting to get a restraining order against all animal rights activists at their stores throughout California.
Today the Animal Legal Defense Fund, the nation’s preeminent legal advocacy organization for animals, filed a lawsuit against the Tillamook County Creamery Association for its misrepresentations about the source of its milk and the conditions in which the cows live. The lawsuit has been filed on behalf of a class of Oregon consumers.
Read more from their press release here.
Democracy Now discusses recent open rescues and investigations into factory farms that supply corporations like Whole Foods and Amazon. Watch part 2 of the report here.
For years now, Whole Foods has marketed itself as selling meat and animal products that come from animals that are humanely raised. DxE has conducted numerous investigations of farms that supply Whole Foods such as Diestel Turkey Ranch and Petaluma Farms, and the investigative teams have found and documented, in photographs and on video, a wide range of atrocities, including, depending on the farm investigated, dead birds among the living, birds trapped in their own feces, birds crammed together in barns, birds that live their entire short lives inside barns, untreated wounds and/or cannibalisms.
Read more from EcoWatch here.
Fowlplay: Please help us hold chicken and turkey producers accountable for deceptive claims!
In 2015, DxE released an investigation of Diestel Turkey Ranch, a top rated Whole Foods farm. We discovered that the images they use in their advertisements were taken at a farm that existed purely for show -- the turkeys actually raised for Whole Foods were held far away in huge, filthy sheds.
In investigations from California to the Carolinas, DxE has probed the space between industry promise and industry practice, with often grotesque results. By sneaking onto factory farms with cameras, DxE investigators had revealed mass cannibalism in cage-free chicken houses that supplied Costco. They found turkeys packed together with open sores, in six inches of feces, in a California farm that Whole Foods had marked as the best of the best. And when Smithfield, the Chinese-owned, Virginia-based corporation that is one of the world’s largest pig farmers, announced that they had phased out farrowing crates for sows, a DxE investigation alleged that crates continue to be used.
Read more from The Intercept here.