The calves are undeniably suffering. This facility should be shut down immediately.”
MFA also published a written statement from three experts from Colorado State University. The authors are Bernard E. Rollin, Ph.D., Professor of Animal Sciences; William Wailes, BS, an extension dairy specialist for the Department of Animal Sciences, and Terry Engle, Ph.D., an associate professor.
“This current video of atrocities committed at what appears to be a calf ranch, is without a doubt one of the worst I have ever seen.
Most egregious is the method of killing calves utilized by the workers. Anyone possessed of an ounce of common sense or common decency would know even without being told that one does not kill a calf by bludgeoning it repeatedly on the head with a claw hammer ... Given the non-secretive way in which these workers went about killing the animals, I must assume that the owner and/or manager of the farm knows what is going on and expresses no disapproval.
A number of calves are covered with nasty, open sores which very likely come from their being bedded on quicklime with no straw protecting them from its corrosive effects. The handling of these calves is also so outrageous as to count as cruelty, as when the animals are roughly and painfully picked up by the ears and tail, something so obviously hurtful that one hardly needs any experience with calves to know that it is wrong.
[We] urge everyone in a position of authority to serve notice to the world that this sort of behavior has no place in a society wishing to consider itself civilized. These people must be corrected with the full force of the legal system. If we allow such deviant and blatant cruelty to go unpunished, we are in effect condoning that sort of behavior, something we surely have no desire to do.”
I was concerned that, like many of these videos before, the images were held back for weeks so a carefully timed press conference could gain maximum impact. Nathan Runkle, founder and executive director of MFA, responded "We went to federal authorities while our investigator was still an employee at the farm. We went to local law enforcement immediately after receiving the green light from the feds - about one week after pulling our investigator out."
While that’s a much better time frame than the criminally drawn out HSUS video taken at Hallmark a few years ago, the MFA video should have been taken to local authorities immediately. Waiting for a week and a ‘green light from the feds’ hardly puts MFA in the clear. To me, their actions contributed to at least an extra 7 days of intolerable abuse.