23rd Sep, 2019

Pig farm dropped by Tesco following claims of animals being kicked and hit with metal sticks

Laura Kearns 21st Aug, 2019 Updated: 22nd Aug, 2019

A PIG farm in south Warwickshire has been dropped by a supermarket giant following claims of animals being kicked and hit with metal sticks.

Tesco has stopped using Hogwood Farm in Oxhill following a third undercover investigation of the premises by animal rights activists Viva.

Red Tractor has also removed the farm, which houses some 15,000 pigs, from its assurance scheme following undercover footage which the campaigners filmed in July.

It showed piglets being kicked and thrown by farm workers, pigs struck with metal riding crops, confined pigs being injected by force and dead pigs dumped into rotting piles.

Viva founder Julie Gellatley said the farm had some of the worst conditions she had ever seen and welcomed news it had been dropped by Tesco and Red Tractor.

She said: “We cannot express how much this decision means for us and the thousands of pigs trapped inside Hogwood Farm.

“The animal cruelty that our team witnessed cannot be easily forgotten.

“Although we congratulate Tesco and Red Tractor on finally making the right decision I can’t help but question why it is routinely left to animal welfare to expose the abuse taking place on farms.”

The Observer was unable to contact Brian Hobill who runs the farm.

But speaking to the BBC he said: “Viva cut films to make it look like we are bad farmers. In every case we were saving animals, not as they were saying and hurting them.

“They have targeted us because of our location and it is a good place to protest outside.

“I’d like to get Red Tractor assurance back again, I believe we are excellent farmers.”

Mr Hobill added despite being dropped by the suppliers the farm had found other ‘arrangements’.

Tesco said the footage from the farm fell below the standards it expected.

A spokesman told the Observer: “We have asked our supplier to stop all supply from Hogwood. These are distressing and unacceptable scenes which fall well below the high animal welfare standards we require from all of our suppliers.”

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