Animal rights activists carry dead pigs in downtown Helsinki protest
Central Union of Agricultural Producers disapproved of the demonstration
The Oikeutta Eläimille (”Justice for Animals”) organisation staged a protest on Wednesday afternoon, displaying carcasses of piglets at The Three Smiths’ statue in downtown Helsinki.
”These piglets less than four weeks of age weigh a couple of kilos. They were dumped by a pig farm after they had died”, reported Anne Nieminen, the information officer of the organisation.
”We planned to hold a protest before Christmas, as we wanted to remind people of the fact that behind every ham on the table there is a pig that has been suffering in a piggery and died as a result of that”, she said.
The Central Union of Agricultural Producers and Forest Owners (MTK) characterised the stunt as an insult to both the producers and consumers of pigs.
The Finnish Food Safety Authority EVIRA also delpored the incident on health grounds.
Five owners of pig farms have expressed their dissatisfaction with the ruling by the Salo District Court last week, according to which a group of animal activists who had shot videotape showing poor conditions at a pig farm was acquitted of all charges of aggravated defamation.
The prosecutor has also expressed discontent with the decision.
The main defendant was given a 20-day suspended sentence for disturbing the public peace, but all other charges were rejected.
The court also rejected the pig farmers’ demands for more than EUR 150,000 in monetary restitution.
More video material was released earlier this week, and the subject is unlikely to go away, particularly as the timing is geared to the Christmas season, when consumption of pork reaches a high point.
Previously in HS International Edition:
New video by animal rights activists shows that little has been done to improve conditions at Finnish pig farms (22.11.2011)
Animal rights activists acquitted on nearly all counts in secret videotaping of pig farm conditions (16.11.2011)
Animal rights activists who secretly filmed Finnish pig farms two years ago may now face prison (30.8.2011)
Minister says supervision of pig farms is sufficient (23.11.2011)
The Central Union of Agricultural Producers and Forest Owners (MTK)
Finnish Food Safety Authority, EVIRA