Worldlog Week 35 – 2008

29 אוגוסט 2008

I spoke with someone this week who told me about the so called “Soy Pro Plus Machine” which makes healthy and nutritious soy fruit smoothies for children in countries where there is famine and food shortage. It is the intention that in the future local farmers will grow the soybeans in an environmentally friendly manner. The first machine is now in the township in Heibron (South Africa). The project is supported by the Plentyfood Foundation, a group where members of the Party for the Animals are also active. You can find their website here

There was a television program which was aired on Dutch television on July 16th, 2008 called “Klootwijk by the Sea: Eel”. It was about the catching of eel in Ireland and the transportation of the eels to The Netherlands while they were still alive and had the fishing hooks in their mouths. Esther Owehand asked Minister Verburg of Agriculture the question and I would like to share the utterly shameful answer of the Minister with you:

Question: Can you explain why eel that are caught in Ireland are not killed first before they are transported to The Netherlands with the fishing hook still in their mouths?
Answer: It is only when the customer wishes it to happen, that they are transported live in order to be processed in The Netherlands. During transport the eels are chilled in ice water. It is important that the fish are fresh when they are going to be smoked. If the eel were killed in Ireland and then transported to The Netherlands, it would lead to a lower quality eel that would be less suitable for smoking. Also there are eel that are caught in Ireland and killed and cleaned immediately before they are exported to The Netherlands. This eel is as a general rule not smoked, but is consumed in another way.”

The above answer makes clear that the Minister puts economic interest above the decent treatment of animals. But it gets worse:

Question: “Can you explain the way these eel are eventually killed in The Netherlands? Is it permissible in The Netherlands to catch eel in this way, to transport them live with the fishing hook still their mouths and to kill them only after they are transported? If so, how does this comply with the rule of not causing animals unnecessary pain? If not, why do you allow this practice to occur?”
Answer: “(…) Transport with the fishing hook still in their mouths probably causes less suffering than the removal of the hook. In removing the hook from live eel there is a chance of causing injury. From the standpoint of animal welfare it is in this specific case better to leave the fishing hook in. (…)”

It couldn't get much worse!

Until next week!