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Sweden condemns pig cannibalism

TT/The Local · 22 Jun 2010, 17:00

Published: 22 Jun 2010 17:00 GMT+02:00

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Erlandsson reacted after learning that a Danish producer part-owned by Swedish meat producer Scan makes pig feed that contains pig blood, among other ingredients.

"It is ethically objectionable to eat one's own species," he said.

Following the mad cow disease crisis in the 1990s, meat and bone meal were banned as feed for pigs, cows and chickens. Cannibalism was cited as a reason for the spread of mad cow disease, officially known as bovine spongiform encephalopathy (BSE).

However, across Europe, pigs can now be fed entirely legally with feed containing pig blood and fat, Sveriges Radio's news bulletin Ekot reported on Tuesday.

In Sweden, Scan and other large meat producers have agreed not to use blood or animal fat in animal feed for pigs, among others. However, Scan is part-owner of Danish company Daka, which produces pig feed based on pig blood and fat.

Scan's communications director Margaretha Thorngren thinks that it is unethical if to give pigs animal feed derived from their own species and now wants to see a change.

Story continues below…

Leo Virta, head of marketing at Daka, told Ekot that the blood and fat processing is so refined at the plant that it is something completely different than the pigs for meat and bone meal.

"Strictly speaking, one can say that there has been an industrial version of a natural raw material that becomes natural again," he said.

TT/The Local (news@thelocal.se)

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Your comments about this article

18:33 June 22, 2010 by calebian22
mmmmmm, bacon.
18:54 June 22, 2010 by Redbee
Reading about this makes me even more glad i am a healthy vegetarian .
18:55 June 22, 2010 by k9dr
let us just stick to horse korv or maybe we could feed dogs to the pigs we eat, different species
18:57 June 22, 2010 by Mr Gee
If we breed animals to eat them then surely we should at least respect them; not only by looking after their welfare and ending their lives quickly and humanly but also by feeding them proper food.

If we don't respect them then we are disrepecting ourselves.

We are what we eat.
01:37 June 23, 2010 by glamelixir
@ Redbee same same here

I suggest we just leave animals alone!
08:23 June 23, 2010 by dwb5555
This has been done for centuries because it in fact protect the pigs from disease.
09:23 June 23, 2010 by engagebrain

'This has been done for centuries because it in fact protect the pigs from disease'

The scientific basis for protecting pigs from disease by feeding them their own blood is what exactly ?
11:02 June 23, 2010 by dwb5555
@engagebrain Here is answer to your question. Also I want to add that piglet do not produce antibodies until after 8 weeks old, again another way to protect them.


You are feeding pig to pigs. Isn't that cannibalism?

Cannibalism would involve feeding the flesh of the pig. Here it is only a product derived from purified blood. Because of the nature of blood, it is equivalent to when a piglet sucks milk from the sow. Blood products provide similar rich nutrition and protection against infections.

This question was answered by the EU Scientific Steering Committee (SSC) in September 1999, when indicated. "Recycling on animal co-product processed into basic biochemical substances as fat and proteins are recognised as an effective way of re-use valuable materials. When an animal is discomposed to these materials it is not anymore recognised as being interspecies recycling"
20:38 June 23, 2010 by rufus.t.firefly
I agree with the Ag Minister.

A few years back, another Ag Minister did not enforce EU laws about BSE (Mad Cow Disease), claiming it was all hysteria. Swedish beef was banned from EU export as a result and Swedes were left with bland assurances and potentially tainted beef. Anyone know how it is now?

11:37 June 26, 2010 by Taketh
Language note: The first word of the first sentence in the first paragraph cannot begin with "however" because the word simply is used to introduce a statement contrasting with a previous one.

Pigs? it's not healthy to eat pigs in general, period! Let alone making pigs eat pigs.
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