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South Australia’s largest pig slaughterhouse exposed by hidden cameras

Tue 8 Jul 2014 by Aussie Farms

This article relates to the following facility: Big River Pork Abattoir (Aussie Abattoirs)

Two months after world-first footage emerged from the gas chambers at the Corowa pig abattoir in NSW, animal activists have now released even more damning footage of the apparently “humane” method of stunning used for the vast majority of pigs killed in Australia, this time from inside Big River Pork, the largest pig slaughtering facility in South Australia.

This comes as the South Australian Legislative Council debates new ‘ag-gag’ legislation designed to prevent material such as this from ever reaching the public. The footage, filmed over one day in May this year, shows thousands of terrified pigs, including sows, being forced into the gas chamber by an electric cattle prod. In some instances, the electric prod was used on the faces and anus of pigs, and despite the company policy on the wall of the room stating that the device should be used on no more than 1 in 4 pigs, was used on almost every single pig several times, even when the walkway ahead was blocked. Once inside the chamber, pigs are lowered into the gas, where they are seen screaming and thrashing frantically, trying to escape as the gas suffocates them.

Animal activist group Aussie Farms received the footage anonymously, and have sent it to RSPCA SA in the hopes of gaining a prosecution for what Aussie Farms’ operations director Chris Delforce describes as “torture”.

“This footage shows what we feared – the horrific scenes we recently revealed at the Corowa slaughterhouse are absolutely industry-standard. We’re seeing the exact same reactions from the pigs here, and this time, the footage also shows the final moments of the sows whose lives have been a constant cycle of forced impregnation, confinement, and having their piglets taken away so the process can start again. It’s a sad life of 3-5 years of abuse and exploitation, and to see that this is where they end up… it’s heartbreaking.”

“Many of the sows have CULL or NIP spray-painted on their backs. NIP is where they were thought to be pregnant but fail to actually give birth to piglets, and so they’re considered to be a waste of the farmers’ time and resources and are sent to slaughter, and of course we’ve released images from pig farms where sows have CULL or DESTROY written on them because they’re not performing well enough.”

“The industry wants to hide footage like this from the public through the introduction of ‘ag-gag’ laws… Not on our watch.”

It is understood that RSPCA have begun an investigation. The footage is available at Aussie Farms’ new campaign website,