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Ag Secretary says animal rights activist trying to kick pork producers while they are down

Ag/Outdoor, News

May 29th, 2020 by Ric Hanson

(Radio Iowa) — Animal rights groups are criticizing the methods used by Iowa pork producers to euthanize the animals that they are not able to take to the packing plant. Coronavirus shutdowns slowed production and Ag Secretary Mike Naig says no producer wants to destroy animals. “As it relates to some of the activist activity in the state, I think it is disgusting,” Naig says. He says hog farmers hate this more than anyone. “I think that our producers are experiencing and unprecedented disruption in their business and their way of life. And we’ve got folks with a clear agenda that are kicking our farmers while they are down,” he says.

Naig says producers follow specific guidelines. “The facts are that producers work with their veterinarians. Veterinarians follow the American Vet Med Association’s guidelines for euthanasia– humane euthanasia, even in constrained situations like we are in today,” according to Naig. “That’s the guidelines, those are the best practices that producers will use. No producer wants to be in this situation.”

Naig says the backup of hogs will reduce as meat processing plants get back up to full production — but it will still take some time to catch up.