Milk leaving Chilliwack Cattle Sales, Canada’s largest dairy farm and the site of the most recent undercover animal abuse video, will no longer be destroyed. The British Columbia Milk Marketing Board (BCMMB) said in a statement that as of June 20, 2014, all processors had again agreed to take milk from the 3,500-cow dairy.
The rollercoaster for the farm’s milk trucks started June 2, when the British Columbia Society for Prevention of Cruelty to Animals received a video showing abuse at the farm resulting in the firing and possible charges against eight employees. The animal rights group Mercy for Animals Canada filmed the horrendous acts, and then released them to the public on June 9.
On Thursday, June 12, the BCMMB said it suspended milk pickups from the farm to address welfare concerns, but then commenced milk pickups on Saturday, June 14.
click image to zoom By June 17, processor Saputo decided it didn’t want the milk, resulting in several days’ worth of milk being destroyed. But again on Friday, June 20, all processors had voluntarily agreed to resume receiving milk from the farm.
The abuse video obviously caused outrage from farmers and consumers alike, garnering nearly 110,000 online signatures for a change.org petition against Saputo. But the destruction of milk caused its own protests, with comments via Twitter and a local news station hosting a poll whether it should be dumped on its website.
One Facebook page in support of the farm has quickly amassed over 1,600 people since the incident, and a petition started through that movement gained 1,750 signatures.