PETA: Video shows abuse at dairy farm

The Associated Press

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CHARLOTTE — The group People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals said it has a video showing sick, emaciated cows being forced to stand in knee-deep manure for hours, even when the animals are milked and fed at a North Carolina dairy farm.

The organization is asking several state agencies and law enforcement to conduct an emergency inspection of the Osborne farm in western North Carolina. A phone number there had been disconnected.

PETA senior vice president Daphna Nachminovitch said the farm sells milk to Harris Teeter’s milk supplier - Piedmont Milk Sales Inc.

The group’s investigator Dan Peden said he found a document a few days ago at the Osborne dairy that showed a shipment of milk was headed to Piedmont Milk’s bulk tank in Hickory. He said a Piedmont Milk sales rep told them the plant supplies “milk exclusively to Harris Teeter.”

But Harris Teeter communications manager Catherine Becker told The Associated Press that the grocery chain’s supplier, Piedmont Milk Sales Inc., doesn’t receive milk from the dairy farm. She said Piedmont Milk is a raw milk supplier for the grocery chain’s dairy.

“Osborne Dairy Farm is a Piedmont producer but, Piedmont has never delivered milk to our dairy from that farm. Again, you will need to speak with Piedmont regarding any questions about that farm,” Becker said.

Piedmont Milk didn’t immediately respond to questions Tuesday afternoon.

Meanwhile, PETA has shared its findings with several state and county agencies.

Haywood County Animal Services is looking into the allegations, its director Jean Hazzard said Tuesday. She said they have contacted the farm.

“We have to look at all the animals to prove or disprove the allegations,” Hazzard said, adding that she didn’t know how long the investigation would take.



Whoever abused these cows needs to be held responsible. Whenever animals are treated as commodities—rather than the thinking, feeling, individuals they are—cruelty is sure to follow. Even on farms where cows aren’t forced to live knee-deep in their own filth, abuse abounds, including calves being torn from their mothers soon after birth to be sent to veal farms (so humans can take the milk that’s intended for them), and cows having their horns (or horn buds) painfully seared or cut off without any anesthetics.

Own Up and Fix It

Harris Teeter can deny it all they like - the proof is in the pudding. The whistleblower who supplied PETA with this video followed the truck that picked up milk from Osborne Dairy Farm to Piedmont Milk Sales, which has publicly acknowledged that it exclusively supplies Harris Teeter. This is the disturbing video from the investigation: If Osborne, Piedmont, and Harris Teeter are going to continue to turn huge profits off of these animals, the least they can do is admit where cruelty has occurred and work to fix it.

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