Farmscape for January 28, 2016
An animal science professor with Colorado State University says in the age of cell phone video and social media agriculture needs to show what goes on on the farm or someone else will.
"How Consumers View Animal Welfare" was discussed earlier this month as part of the 2016 Banff Pork Seminar.
Dr. Temple Grandin, an animal science professor with Colorado State University, says agriculture needs to open up the door and show the house.
Clip-Dr. Temple Grandin-Colorado State University:
Consumers want to know about stuff and when there's been situations where things have not been on the label, let's take the GMO issue.
That has gotten into a great big whole turmoil now and part of the problem is, it was not originally put on the label.
Then we had the whole debacle down in the United States with the finely textured beef.
One of the problems was, it was not on the label.
People don't like it when they get surprised.
We've got to be completely open and transparent.
I have some videos up on line that show exactly how a pork slaughter plant works and those videos were sponsored by the American Meat Institute which is now the North American Meat Institute.
It shows the whole entire process.
We got about 85 to 90 percent likes on that video.
We've got to show it.
If we cover it up then somebody else shows it for us and activists unfortunately have gotten into farms and found some bad things.
But some of the activist videos 10 years ago were worse than some of the ones they're getting now.
Some of the stuff now I've seen with pigs is more rough handling.
If you look at all of the activist videos over the last 10 years a lot of the pig stuff has actually gotten better.
Cell phones, they're everywhere.
They all take video, you can't get away form them so you better handle animals right.
We need to change a few things and then open up the door and show it.
Dr. Grandin notes survey data shows values matter, especially among younger consumers and industry has not done a good job of publicizing to the public the good things that have done.
For Farmscape.Ca, I'm Bruce Cochrane.
*Farmscape is a presentation of Sask Pork and Manitoba Pork