Tesco selling cruel pig products in Thailand
Tesco Lotus, a supermarket chain in Thailand owned by Tesco, is selling pork products from factory farms where mother pigs are kept in steel cages no bigger than a fridge.
Like all pigs, a mother pig normally spends hours roaming around foraging for food and socialising with other pigs. When it’s time for her to give birth she builds a nest for her piglets. But on a factory farm she will be trapped in a tiny concrete space enclosed behind steel bars where she cannot move.
Ask Tesco to act for mother pigs
Tesco is a UK company and we’re calling for them to introduce a global pig welfare policy to ensure mother pigs in Thailand are given a better life. You can follow our campaign calling for action for mother pigs in Thailand here.
Sadly, pregnancy cages, also known as ‘sow stalls’, are used in many countries, including the USA, China and Thailand. Three out of four of the world’s mother pigs are kept in these steel cages, treated as breeding machines, producing litter upon litter of piglets that are then reared for pork.
Mother pigs in the UK
In the UK pregnancy cages were banned in 1999 and 40% of mother pigs are kept outside where they are free to root around and perform more natural behaviours when giving birth. The rest are kept indoors in group housing where they should be provided with materials such as straw.
However, many mother pigs in the UK are often still put into restrictive farrowing crates for weeks at a time to give birth and while they are feeding their piglets. Once the piglets have been weaned the mother pigs are impregnated again and go back to their groups until they are pregnant.
Our previous success for mother pigs
Supermarkets and their suppliers have the power to make changes for animals. We’ve already had success persuading Kroger, the largest grocery chain in the US, and CP Foods, a Thai pork producer, to get mother pigs out of cages in its Thai operations by 2025.
Our work: a better future for farming
Around the globe World Animal Protection is working with pork producers to develop higher welfare systems. We want to get mother pigs out of cages and housed in social group with materials such as straw and hay to allow them to express natural behaviors. And we want to see mother pigs giving birth in well-designed free farrowing systems where they can build nests for their piglets.