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05/03/2013

Paul Shapiro’s Animal News You Can Use!  »

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It’s Paul Shapiro’s Animal News You Can Use! Yay, Paul! Yay, Animals!

First, some good news in our campaign to eradicate gestation crates from pork production: The top eight grocers in Canada (including Walmart Canada) committed to phase out gestation crates. This led one ag reporter to editorialize, “It seems to me like you might as well stick a fork in its butt and turn it over: the gestation stall debate is done.”

Now, some more good news: The Indiana ag-gag bill was killed this week.

I had a new op-ed on CNN.com this week about ag-gag bills that you may want to check out. Also, you may be interested in another new piece of mine (this one on Huffington Post) about the pork industry’s Orwellian name game. And I was glad to do an interview on HuffPost Live this week.

In Tennessee, the ag-gag bill’s sponsor, pork producer state Rep. Andy Holt, created headlines when he sent an email to my coworker comparing HSUS’s cruelty exposés to rape and human trafficking, even calling our work “tape and rape.” There was a lot of attention on this repulsive comparison, but this one

The Tennessee governor is still deciding whether to sign or veto the ag-gag bill. In the meantime, more than 300 Tennessee clergy members sent a letter to him urging a veto.

A woman was arrested in Utah this week for taking photos of a slaughter plant from public property, though the charges were subsequently dropped, leading the Salt Lake Tribune to editorialize that it’s an “ag-gag backfire.”

A new ag-gag bill was introduced in Pennsylvania this week, and the Wayne Independent is the first paper in the state to editorialize against it, asserting that it “goes against everything this country has stood for since its inception.”

Finally, you’ve heard of schools doing Meatless Mondays, but have you heard of them going all-vegetarian? Now you have. Perhaps that’s no surprise, especially considering that a new Consumer Reports study found 90 percent of retail turkey samples contain dangerous bacteria. Whatever the reason may be, meat-free eating is catching on in a major way. As one AP article this week proclaimed: “Vegetarian cooking goes mainstream.”

P.S. Video of the week: Cat loves vacuum

P.P.S. Too fascinating not to share: With smoking declining, U.S. tobacco growers are turning to growing chick peas to supply the increasing demand for hummus. Apparently the invisible hand of the free market is working==and it likes to dip veggies in hummus.

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