December 08, 2003


Scotland Pork Company Expelled By Quality Assurance Agency


Action was taken against one of Scotland's biggest pig farmers as animal rights campaigners released footage of "horrific conditions" found at some of his farms.


Arthur Simmers of Scotpigs Ltd, Scotland's second biggest pork producer, has been expelled by the industry's quality assurance agency, Quality Meat Scotland (QMS), a move which officials say in effect stops him doing business in Scotland.


The action coincides with the release of an undercover video taken by Advocates for Animals in the last week at four Scotpigs farms. The footage showed the rotting carcasses of piglets among live animals, infestations of rats and flies, and pigs with open and weeping sores.


The group's campaigns director, Ross Minett, said the videos, which have been passed to the Scottish Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals, were "the shameful reality" of modern intensive pig farming.


"We have investigated Scotland's pig industry again and yet again we have found a disgusting situation," he said.


QMS confirmed it had removed Scotpigs from its assurance scheme. All 300 pig farms in Scotland take part in the voluntary scheme, which ensures standards of animal health and welfare.


QMS said the decision had been taken before the release of the Advocates for Animals video.

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