LETTER: Fair Oaks Farms Animal Abuse

As a dairy farmer and beef producer, I saw red and felt anger inside of me that I have not felt in many years.

To the Editor:

A horrific video was shared on social media a couple of days ago depicting animal abuse of calves on Fair Oaks Farms (Fairlife Milk). I am sure some of you have seen the video and possibly even shared it. As a dairy farmer and beef producer, I saw red and felt anger inside of me that I have not felt in many years. How can anyone stand there witnessing this abuse, film it and do nothing? Absolutely nothing.

I decided to put my thoughts and emotions into writing, then shared them on our Kootenay River Beef Facebook page.

At one point in my life, I worked as an animal cruelty investigator in British Columbia. I witnessed horrific acts of abuse toward many species of animals. Animals in homes, animals on farms of all sizes, even “rescue” organizations. I have, been and will always be committed to animal welfare.

Fair Oaks Farm was unaware that the individuals they hired were undercover activists working for the Animal Recovery Mission (ARM). Upon the hiring of these undercover ARM employees and any other employees, a contract was required to be signed. This is a “see something say something” or a report abuse contract. Many farms including ours have contracts like this in place.

Over time, video footage was captured by the ARM undercover employees. These same undercover ARM employees failed to report the abuse as it was occurring; instead, they simply filmed it! It should be noted that the abuse was reported by other staff members and not any of the undercover ARM employees.

This leaves me even more outraged! Critically think about this. How can anyone stand and video acts of horrific abuse toward animals or any human being and not report it to authorities? How does withholding these videos and failing to report immediately show compassion for animals? Animal activism is big business with a very transparent goal being to end all animal agriculture.

Abusers prey on our most vulnerable in society, those that cannot speak for themselves. Abusers prey on animals, babies, children, mentally ill and our elderly. There are bad people in all walks of every profession. This is the sad reality of the world we live in today. We all need to report abuse!

Our laws need to change with respect to animal abuse. The penalties must be swift and harsh toward the perpetrators and anyone involved in filming or knowledge of the abuse that fails to report.

We as farmers all need to be learning from this. Watch your staff. Install cameras if and where needed. Your staff learns from you and model your behaviour. Do you have a “report abuse” policy?

Thank you to farmers that are dedicated to the five freedoms and are raising their animals with compassion, respect and love.

Christine Vanderloos | Kootenay River Beef | Vanderloos Farms Ltd


Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

RDCK to implement new emergency alert notification system

System also includes sends alerts for water advisories

From baseball stars to forest fires: Southeast Fire Centre water bomber has an interesting past

Tanker 489 is stationed in Castlegar this year, but in the 1960s it belonged to the L.A. Dodgers.

Traffic finally eases along Arrow Lakes ferry routes

Motorists were stuck for up to six hours in ferry lineups over the weekend

Shoppers Drug Mart launches in-store virtual service at several B.C. stores

The service is now available in 12 rural B.C. communities and will expand province-wide in August

Milestone RCMP Cops For Kids fundraiser ride going virtual

You can join and help RCMP raise funds for families and possibly win 20th anniversary cycling shirt

B.C. sees 25 new COVID-19 cases, community exposure tracked

One death, outbreaks remain in two long-term care facilities

COVID-19 cases identified in Kelowna, after public gatherings

Those who were downtown or at the waterfront from June 25 to July 6 maybe have been exposed to COVID-19.

VIDEO: Alberta man rescues baby eagle believed to be drowning in East Kootenay lake

Brett Bacon was boating on a lake in Windermere when he spotted the baby eagle struggling in the water

Conservationists raise concerns over state of care for grizzly cubs transferred to B.C. zoo

‘Let them be assessed now before their fate is sealed,’ urges B.C. conservationist Barb Murray

B.C.’s COVID-19 job recovery led by tourism, finance minister says

Okanagan a bright spot for in-province visitor economy

National Kitten Day aka the ‘purrfect’ day to foster a new friend

July 10 marks National Kitten Day, a special day to celebrate all things kittens

Lower Mainland YouTubers claim to be Kelowna display toilet ‘poopers’

RCMP can not speak to legitimacy of video, will be investigating

Haida matriarchs occupy ancient villages as fishing lodges reopen to visitors

‘Daughters of the rivers’ say occupation follows two fishing lodges reopening without Haida consent

Conservatives say police should be called into investigate WE charity scandal

Trudeau is already under investigation by the ethics commissioner for potential conflict of interest

Most Read