The Kellogg’s-owned veggie brand debuts a vegan “Cheezeburger” to kick off its journey to becoming 100-percent vegan in the next three years.


Vegetarian brand MorningStar Farms—a subsidiary of the Kellogg Company—will transition to becoming a fully vegan company by 2021. According to the brand, the move will spare 300 million egg whites annually and its fully vegan line will be available to 25,000 restaurants and eating establishments within K-12 schools, universities, and hospitals nationwide. To celebrate its transformation, the brand will unveil a vegan Cheezeburger (its vegan Meat Lovers quarter-pound burger topped with plant-based cheddar cheese) during the upcoming trade show Natural Products Expo West. “This is a very exciting opportunity for us. By making this change, MorningStar Farms favorites can be enjoyed by even more people at home and on-the-go who strive to add plant-based proteins to their plate,” Mel Cash, Head of Global Marketing, Plant Based Protein at Kellogg Company, said. “This will also help us further our commitment to a greener world by helping to reduce the water waste, land usage, and carbon emissions associated with egg production.” Last year, MorningStar Farms removed all animal products from its “Chik’N” line—which includes Buffalo Wings, Chik’N Nuggets, Buffalo Chik Patties, and Original Chik Patties. Currently, the brand’s portfolio is 50-percent vegan with plans to increase its vegan offerings to comprise 65 percent of its product line by the end of 2019.

Letter: Mandatory trap checks needed in MT


According to the Association of Fish and Wildlife Agencies, trappers should check their traps at least once every day.

The American Society of Mammalogists states, “Snares or foot-hold traps should be checked a least daily, but more frequent depending upon target species, the potential for capture of non-target species, and environmental conditions. Frequent checking of traps is the most effective means of minimizing mortality or injury to animals in live traps.”

Montana has no mandatory trap check time. Trapped animals can suffer for days, even weeks, injured and exposed to the elements. Only bobcat trap sets in designated lynx protection zones and traps set for wolves require checking every 48 hours.

“The longer that animal is in a trap, the more likely you have foot injury, shoulder sprains, vascular damage, neural damage,” said Carter Niemeyer, a retired wildlife biologist.

Thirty six states have 24-hour/daily trap checks in their trapping regulations. House Bill 287 requires daily trap checks and allows for exceptions if a trapper cannot tend to the traps. HB287 helps end prolonged suffering of trapped animals and gives the trap-released non-targets, i.e. raptors, mountain lions, grizzly, deer, lynx and beloved pets a chance to survive.

Trapping is a bipartisan issue.

KC York,


A proposed bill will make animal cruelty a federal felony

One of more than 60 dogs in a suspected cruelty case in Jefferson County Arkansas in 2016.

(CNN)Two lawmakers — a Democrat and a Republican — have proposed a bill that will make animal cruelty a federal felony.

Congressman Ted Deutch and Vern Buchanan, both from Florida, think the PACT Act will close a gap that’s existed for years.
But the PACT Act — which stands for Preventing Animal Cruelty and Torture — will broaden the scope of prosecutors.
For instance, right now, all 50 states have laws in their books against animal cruelty on the state level. But what if the animals being tortured cross state lines?
If the bill passes, authorities can go after the wrongdoers because they have federal jurisdiction. They can also prosecute criminals if the cruelty occurs on federal property.
“This is commonsense, bipartisan legislation to bring some compassion to our animal laws,” Rep. Deutch said. “We’ve acted in the past to stop the horrific trend of animal abuse videos; now it’s time to make the underlying acts of cruelty a crime as well.”
Under the PACT Act, a person can be prosecuted for crushing, burning, drowning, suffocating, and impaling animals and sexually exploiting them.
The bill has been endorsed by the National Sheriffs Association and the Fraternal Order of Police. Those convicted under the PACT Act would face federal felony charges, fines and up to seven years in prison.

Animal welfare: if you want cheap knitwear, it’s the sheep that may suffer


Secretly filmed footage of a group of sheep shearers working on a farm makes for shocking viewing. Animals are kicked, stamped on and punched in the face. The abuse, uncovered by an animal rights group, is difficult to watch.

Broadcast by Channel 4 News, the footage was filmed by PETA Asiaduring summer wool shearing, when teams of contractors are typically paid “per sheep sheared”.

It goes without saying that animal cruelty and mishandling is unethical, and sheep farmers are understandably keen to stress that the footage is not representative of British sheep farming practises. But beyond the indefensible actions of some individuals lies a wider issue. In low margin industries, such as wool, there are limited incentives to invest in people with a high level of skill – or respect for animals.

Consumer demand for cheap clothing is part of the problem. Apart from what is used for carpets, mattresses and one or two other artisan sectors of the industry, the generally low price of wool makes it hard for farmers to prioritise processes like shearing. To do so is neither profitable nor productive.

The market for wool is particularly stringent. What was once a thriving component of the sheep farming industry is now a mere byproduct of the more profitable lamb market. Yes, wool commodity prices have increased over the last decade and there have been some niche successes in, for example, rare breed wool such as Herdwick fleece from the UK’s Lake District.

But for many farmers, wool production provides only a small fraction of their overall income. In terms of the invested effort in cleaning, processing and packing shorn fleeces, it is almost certainly loss making.

The sheep shearing scandal revealed by PETA comes at a time when there has been a sharpening focus on animal welfare issues. There have been policy pledges made by the UK’s environment secretary, Michael Gove, to bring animals into the political spotlight, for example by prohibiting sales of puppies and kittens in pet shops.

But these pledges may do little to reassure a public that takes a serious interest in animal health and that has seen myriad recent “scandals” in relation to contamination (horse meat), disease (foot and mouth, BSE, bird flu) and the ethics of animal treatment.

Animal ethics

Research shows that a large majority of people who work with animals do so because they find human-animal contact rewarding in some way. For some, it’s the prospect of improving the well-being of animals as a veterinary surgeon, or as a volunteer in a rescue shelter. For others, like farmers, the reward comes from interacting with animals as part of a particular way of life.

Even those employed in slaughterhouses and meat processing plants have been observed to display a generally unemotional “blankness” rather than outright violence when it comes to handling animals. It seems instead that acts of violence and cruelty are restricted to a minority, and research has shed light on the psychological links between animal violence and other forms of social dysfunction, such as domestic abuse. For most, animal work is either positively rewarding or routinely unemotional.

What is significant is that a minority of unregulated and probably unobserved individuals are allowed to engage in acts of cruelty that most would find repugnant and deeply upsetting. In the sheep farming industry, where farmers are working to tight profit margins in tough conditions, there is so little slack in the system that – at times like shearing – speed can be valued over other concerns.

It is this low margin, high speed culture which makes it more likely that self-employed contractors like shearing gangs will seek to cut corners or lose patience with their charges and react with violence.

There are no simple solutions to such problems. But continuing to expose and discuss animal cruelty is an important step in ensuring it remains on the agricultural and political agenda – and that it permeates the consciousness of consumers, too.

Consumer demand for wool is a driver of the price the farmer receives and, as the seasons change and magazine editors publicise jumpers and cardigans for the autumn and winter, now is a good time to raise awareness of the issue.

A happy Herdwick. Shutterstock

Greater regulation and surveillance is needed in the shearing industry to ensure rogue practitioners are prevented from finding work. Beyond that, however, sheep farmers also need to be able to secure greater returns for wool in order to maximise the care they take in its production. It needs to be worth their while to hire people who are paid fairly for the time they take to do the job well.

It can be done. In the UK, Herdwick sheep were once maligned for their particularly wiry wool. Their products have now been successfully rebranded as the breed’s longstanding connection to the beautiful Lake District has added a premium to their fleeces, now prized for their quality and durability in the production of mattresses, carpets and tweeds. Other farmers may well be able to follow their lead, providing greater opportunities for generating new value in this most ancient of commodities.

Animals Need, but Don’t Get, Shade and Adequate Water during Record Heat

Canadian Blog

by Barry Kent MacKay,
Senior Program Associate

Born Free USA’s Canadian Representative

Published 08/02/18

Bison at MarinelandPhoto: Born Free USA

As I mentioned in my last blog, after a 37 year hiatus, not ever wanting to return because I had been so disturbed by the terrible care animals were receiving during my first visit, I finally made my second visit to Marineland, and the horror of the place remains for me. I had been lured by advertisements for “Aviary Safari,” a new attraction featuring 100 acres of “free-roaming” birds. I’m a bird expert; I should take a look. But it was false advertising. The attraction does not exist.

Rob Laidlaw and I were there on July 5, the last day of a brutal, record-breaking heat wave filled with government-issued heat warnings, so not surprisingly our first stop was in the cool confines of an indoor exhibit featuring harbor seals. The seals, as reported previously, all had their eyes tightly shut due to the chlorine in their tank.

Then, we went in search of the aviary that did not exist. After being told by an employee that there was no such display (for which, given how animals are cared for in Marineland, I’m grateful), we wandered off in search of other animal displays in what is, to my eyes, just a grubby theme park that happens to be located in Niagara Falls, Ontario, near Horseshoe Falls, a world-famous tourist attraction.

What we were horrified to find huge pens with no trees and very little, if any, shade, housing various hoofed ungulates, such as bison, red deer, and the closely related American wapiti. There were some improvements over the last 37 years. There were fewer bears and they were in a larger, cleaner compound, and I was pleased that the petting compound, filled with fallow deer, was not open, presumably because of the intense heat. The animals were forced to huddle in a few square feet of shade cast by the fencing.

But, what I saw in the other compounds left me sick with sorrow for the animals. Above are two photos taken of the bison compound. It was just an open, sun-blasted expanse, with but a single source of water, about the size of a pail. I’ve included a photo of a bison calf, about the size of a cow calf, so you can see the size of this water source. No place for the herd to drink; no place for them to wallow in the mud; no shade for them to cool off.

Please don’t tell me to complain. Animal protectionists have been complaining, for decades, and The Ontario SPCA once laid charges, but somehow missed what to my eyes – and those of various experts who have written reports on what they found – are the most concerning situations. And, for our troubles we are labeled, of course, as extremists. Here are the photos. Judge for yourself.

Keep Wildlife in the Wild,

U.S. House approves bill to allow killing sea lions

WASHINGTON – The U.S. House passed a bill Tuesday that would allow tribal managers and government fish managers to kill limited numbers of sea lions in the Columbia River to improve the survival of endangered salmon and steelhead populations.

The legislation passed by a vote of 288 to 116.

Under the bill, designated officials would be able to remove some California and Stellar sea lions from specific areas where they are posing the most harm to endangered native fish runs.

The bill is sponsored by U.S. Rep. Jaime Herrera Beutler, R-Wash., and U.S. Rep. Kurt Schrader, D-Ore.

“For the salmon and steelhead fighting to make it upstream, today’s vote in the U.S. House significantly improves their chances of survival,” Beutler said after passage of the bill.

“The passage of my bipartisan bill signals a return to a healthy, balanced Columbia River ecosystem by reining in the unnatural, overcrowded sea lion population that is indiscriminately decimating our fish runs.”

Beutler said supporters of the bill are “not anti-sea lion,” adding, “We’re just for protecting a Pacific Northwest treasure – salmon, steelhead, sturgeon and other native fish species iconic to our region.”

A companion bill is moving through the U.S. Senate now, sponsored by U.S. Sen. Jim Risch, R-Idaho, and U.S. Sen. Maria Cantwell, D-Wash.

Joe Stohr, acting director of the Washington State Department of Fish & Wildlife, supported the passage of the bill.

“We appreciate today’s action by the House of Representatives and the efforts of Representatives Herrera Beutler and Schrader to secure the bill’s passage. Sea lion predation on salmon is a complex issue, and we thank them for recognizing the need for action to help recover threatened and endangered populations in the Columbia River.”

Why would anyone want the “real” thing?

Image may contain: text

Clearly, vegan sausage–just like any other type of meat (animal-death) replacement or “substitute”–is far healthier than the rotting flesh it replaces. So why do so many people still choose the “real” thing?

Perhaps there’s something else wrong with the majority of people, besides their outward appearance or cholesterol level. There’s certainly something wrong with the way they think if they would willingly ask that animals be caged and trucked to slaughterhouses because they imagine they taste better than some plant-based “imitation”.

Worse yet, they think it’s wierd that we care that:

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Sixty senior rabbis call for end to ‘evil crime’ of live animal shipments

Chief rabbi of Beersheba says every rabbi should join protest; anyone
buying such meat is complicit in activity that is against human and Torah

One of Israel’s most senior rabbis has ruled that anyone buying meat from
animals shipped from overseas to Israel for slaughter in cruel conditions
is a partner to a crime.

In a letter released Thursday by animal rights activists, Rabbi Yehuda
Deri, chief rabbi of the southern city of Beersheba and a member of the
Chief Rabbinate’s Council, called on every rabbi in Israel to protest the
long-distance shipments of sheep and cattle for fattening and slaughter in

He said he planned to raise the issue at an upcoming meeting of the council.

“It is clear… that whoever buys this meat is a partner to and helps those
committing an evil crime, ” he wrote. “Every rabbi in Israel must take part
in this protest until the issue is resolved.”

The letter was released along with a petition against the shipments signed
by 60 leading rabbis from across the religious spectrum.

“It is clear… that whoever buys this meat is a partner to and helps those
committing an evil crime, ” he wrote. “Every rabbi in Israel must take part
in this protest until the issue is resolved.”

The letter was released along with a petition against the shipments signed
by 60 leading rabbis from across the religious spectrum.

It came in the wake of an exposé by Animals Australia
broadcast on Australian TV’s “60 Minutes
<>,” into the appalling
conditions in which sheep were shipped to the Middle East on five journeys.

The petition says it is “neither the way of the Torah nor of human morality
to allow such cruelty to animals.”

The signatories include members of the Chief Rabbinate’s Council — Rabbi
Deri, Rabbi Ratzon Arusi and Rabbi Shimon Elitov; as well as Israel Prize
laureates Rabbi Prof. Daniel Sperber, Rabbi Avraham Steinberg and Rabbi Eli
Sadan; and the late Rabbi Elyashiv Knohl, who died two weeks ago.

Among other names are Shmuel Rabinowitz, rabbi of the Western Wall; Avigdor
Nebenzahl, a former chief rabbi of Jerusalem, who serves on the faculty of
the Yeshivat HaKotel and is rabbi of the Ramban Synagogue in the Old City;
kashrut expert and veterinarian Dr. Israel Meir Levinger; Itamar
Wahrhaftig, a Bar-Ilan University expert on Jewish law; Ronen Neubert, a
co-founder of the Beit Hillel organization; and Shlomo Sheffer, Bar-Ilan
University’s rabbi.

“We were shocked to discover the harsh facts about the great suffering of
calves and sheep, God’s creatures, sent by ships from Australia and Europe
to be slaughtered in Israel,” says the petition, which reflects the biggest
rabbinical mobilization to date to stop the shipments, which, from
Australia, can take three weeks or more.

“The causing of such extreme suffering to animals solely to satisfy our
desire for fresh meat is not the way of Torah, and it is not human morality
to permit such harsh cruelty to animals… in addition to which, the meat
produced from them costs more than fresh meat that is imported to Israel

The petition concludes by saying that the shipments must be stopped.

Disturbing footage from the documentary, shot by a whistleblower on the
ship and subsequently broadcast on Israel’s Hadashot news, showed
overcrowding on board, with animals packed so tightly that many could not
reach food and water.

Unable to sit or lie down, most stood covered in their own excrement,
gasping for air in scorching temperatures — a sign that they were about to
die from heatstroke.

“They literally cook from the inside while alive during the journey,”
veterinarian Yuval Samuel told Hadashot TV news.

On one of the journeys documented, 2,400 sheep perished and were thrown

The rabbinical protest is being led by two Bar Ilan University professors —
British-born Sperber, president of the Higher Institute of Torah Studies
and a vegetarian, and Yael Shemesh of the Bible department and the center
for women’s research, a vegan — in conjunction with the animal rights
organizations Anonymous for Animal Rights and Let Animals Live.

Rabbi Prof. Daniel Sperber at the June 9, 2015 ordination celebration of
the first cohort for Har’el Beit Midrash. (Sigal Krimolovski

Sperber said, “I have no doubt that anyone who sees these pictures will
find that this situation is completely forbidden by [Jewish law]. This is
indescribable animal suffering…it is so horrific and certainly absolutely

Rabbi Deri said in his letter that “there is no doubt that this phenomenon
completely contradicts the spirit of our Holy Torah and stands in complete
contradiction to certain mitzvot of what is and is not allowed and the many
[Jewish ritual] laws that followed in the Talmud.”

Deri went on to quote examples from Jewish law prohibiting cruelty to
animals and ruling that while Jews are allowed to eat meat, they must do
everything they can to minimize suffering.

Following the broadcast in Australia, the Australian Agriculture Ministry
said it would open an inquiry into the standards of livestock shipping from
Australia to the Middle East.

Public Security Minister Gilad Erdan called for a complete halt, or at
least a significant reduction, to what he termed the “cruel” shipments.
Rabbi Yehuda Deri, April 4, 2011. (Kobi Gideon/Flash90)

He told Hadashot that there was insufficient supervision of the conditions
the long-haul voyages, and that all effort should be made to reduce or
preferably stop the shipments to Israel and the “serious abuse” of animals

The prime minister’s wife, Sara Netanyahu, took to Facebook to register her
“shock” after seeing the broadcast.

Last year, 499,265 live cattle and sheep were shipped to Israel for the
meat industry from Australia and various European countries — a slight
reduction from 2016, when 571,972 heads arrived at Israeli ports, but
nearly double the number for 2015 — 292,274, according to Israel’s
Agriculture Ministry.

Ships resembling multi-story parking lots carry from 1,000 to 20,000
cattle, or 100,000 sheep, or a combination.

Once in Israel, the animals are loaded onto trucks for journeys that can
take hours to slaughterhouses or to pre-slaughter fattening facilities.
They are treated with antibiotics against the infections that overcrowding

While the Australian exposé did not directly relate to shipments to Israel,
footage from a quarantine station at Kibbutz Eilot in the south of the
country released at the same time by Anonymous for Animal Rights showed the
same sort of abuse after ships’ arrivals to the country, with animals being
whipped through a narrow passage.
A worker filmed beating a cow at a quarantine station at Kibbutz Eilot in
Israel’s south after the unloading of cattle for slaughter at the Eilat
port.(Anonymous/Hadashot News screenshot)

Lawmakers from the Knesset’s cross-party Lobby for Animal Rights said in a
statement following the broadcast that despite “explicit promises” from the
agriculture ministry that live shipments would be reduced and imports of
chilled meat increased, “the investigation today shows that nothing has

At present, the government exempts totally or partially from tax the import
of live animals for slaughter while imposing ceilings on tax exemptions for
the import of chilled meat.

It has said in the past that it will gradually increase the amount of tax
exempt chilled meat allowed into the country and phase out live shipments.

Kangaroo Dies After Visitors At Chinese Zoo Hurl Rocks To Force Her To Jump

April 20, 2018

One kangaroo was killed and another injured at a zoo in southeast China
after visitors to their enclosure
sitors-throw-rocks/9682220> pelted the animals with rocks and other objects
in an apparent attempt to get the kangaroos to hop around. The abuse has
sparked fury online and prompted renewed scrutiny into the
-and-why-theyre-still-thriving> mistreatment of animals at Chinese zoos,
several of which have gained notoriety in recent years for cramped and cruel

Zookeepers at the Fuzhou Zoo in Fujian Province
<> told the Haixia
Metropolis News this week that at least one visitor threw “multiple”
sharp-edged rocks at a 12-year-old female kangaroo in March to compel her to
jump, leaving her badly injured and in “deep pain.” She died a few days
later of profuse internal bleeding, her caretakers said.

A 5-year-old male kangaroo in the same enclosure was reportedly also injured
last month after a visitor threw part of a brick at him. The younger
kangaroo was not seriously hurt.

“Some adult [visitors] see the kangaroos sleeping and then pick up stones to
throw at them,” a Fuzhou Zoo attendant told the Haixia Metropolis News.
“Even after we cleared all the stones from the display area, they went
elsewhere to find them. It’s abhorrent.”

Pics of the bricks that visitors hurled at kangaroos at the zoo in Fujian,
killing one and injuring another. Zoo staff say visitors often throw objects
at animals despite it being ‘prohibited’.

– Bill Birtles (@billbirtles)
<> 5:37 AM – Apr
20, 2018

12-year-old kangaroo at zoo in eastern China died after being stoned by
visitors hoping to make it hop <>

– Sixth Tone (@SixthTone)
<> 4:15 AM – Apr 20,

Netizens in China and elsewhere have
> expressed their horror at the behavior of the stone-hurling visitors.

The Metropolis News <> said on
Friday that their social media pages were flooded with readers’ angry
comments, with many calling for visitors who mistreat animals to be
“blacklisted” from zoos.

The Fuzhou Zoo said it had
applied for funding to install high-definition surveillance cameras to
better identify perpetrators. They added that now only three kangaroos would
be on display to reduce the risks to the animals.

Several Chinese zoos have made headlines in recent years for mistreatment of
animals. Last year, visitors were horrified when a
ers-zoo/> live donkey was fed to tigers at a so-called safari park near
Shanghai. In 2016, hundreds of thousands of people called for the
us_578c8b3be4b03fc3ee514af2> closure of Guangzhou’s Grandview Aquarium,
dubbed the “saddest zoo in the world,” after photos of the facility’s barren
enclosures went viral.

Such incidents have increased concerns in China about the country’s lack of
movement-calling-change> animal welfare laws.

Without such legislation, “we can only try to persuade people using common
sense and referring to animal welfare laws in Western countries,” Tong
Yanfang, an animal welfare advocate,
-and-why-theyre-still-thriving> told the South China Morning Post last year.

“For children and many adults who lack judgment, a wrong perception has been
built [in China] that animals are there for the entertainment of humans,”
Tong said. “When they see animals perform in a zoo, they won’t consider how
the animals acquired those skills.”

. This article originally appeared on
a572ce4b00a1849cf477d?ncid=edlinkushpmg00000313> HuffPost.

Critical Animal Studies: Towards Trans-Species Social Justice

*Karen Davis, PhD, President of United Poultry Concerns*

This new book of challenging essays by scholars and activists includes my
analysis of “The Disengagement of Journalistic Discourse about Nonhuman
Animals,” published online as Disengaged Journalism & The Disparagement &
Disappearance of Animals
The book’s Introduction provides the following
synopsis of my chapter to which I’ve taken the liberty of incorporating some
modifications of my own for emphasis:

Prominent activist Karen Davis draws on her long experience of defending
animal rights to consider how animals and animal rights issues have been
represented in mainstream media. In spite of the fact that mainstream
journalism has given more attention in recent years to these spaces of
abuse, Davis notes, “In my 30-plus years in the animal advocacy movement
has been virtually no analysis or critique of the coverage given to farmed
animals by the mainstream media.”

Karen’s analysis demonstrates that a particular type of ethical blindness
persists in which exploitation and violence are, paradoxically, “visible,
unperceived.” In a model of engaged scholarship, Davis exposes the
and rhetorical strategies that are used in media coverage of animal
such as the use of euphemisms like “humane” and “euthanasia” to describe
brutal and sordid violence in the service of profit. *She notes the
* criticisms of specific abuses that exist together with a ready
endorsement of*
* the broad system in which all these cruelties are conducted*. She argues
what some animal advocates consider strong critiques of animal abuse
operate to leave readers powerless and ineffective.

For example, even in cases where cruelties are noted, a jokey style that
comments on how “tasty” animals are serves to undermine any real critique
to condone the system that allows those cruelties to occur. [*New York
columnists Nicholas Kristof and Mark Bittman epitomize this method of
disengagement toward farmed animals, always reassuring readers that no
how much the animals suffer, “we” love our hamburgers and chicken nuggets
more than we care about them.]

Citing a number of cases, Davis analyzes how these rhetorical practices
operate not only in media reports but also in other types of texts and
act to
depoliticize animal abuse, disempower activists, and reinforce mainstream
complacency. Within this model of analysis, liberal opinion – in this
case, a
flaccid concern for “humane treatment” linked with fawning plugs for
“conscientious” omnivorism – plays an important gatekeeper role in
the system, as it acts to constitute the outer limits of acceptable ideas


Please join our campaign against the outer limits of “acceptable” ideas and
attitudes! Open the floodgates!

*International Respect for Chickens Day May 4 *

*Please do an ACTION for Chickens in May!*

*Stick Up For Chickens!*

United Poultry Concerns is a nonprofit organization that promotes
the compassionate and respectful treatment of domestic fowl.
Don’t just switch from beef to chicken. Go Vegan.

View this article online