A message from the new Executive Director of Anima International - Kirsty Henderson
March 2, 2021
Slow death in a gassing box, beating the animals to death with a metal rod, crushing the still breathing minks by the dead ones – shocking footage from a mink farm in Długie Stare near Leszno, the Greater Poland Voivodeship, was published by Otwarte Klatki. The activists informed the prosecutor’s office about the incident.
The investigation was conducted at the turn of November and December 2020 by the activists from Open Cages Poland (Otwarte Klatki) and the German organization SOKO Tierschutz. Hidden cameras were installed at the mink farm in the village of Długie Stare. For several days, they recorded the slaughter of mink - both inside and outside the gassing box. These are the first recordings of this type from Polish fur farms.
The videos show three people who carry out slaughtering with a gas box. They throw the minks into the gassing box carelessly, and the animals who survived the gassing are hit with a metal rod or killed by hitting against a wooden joist. It is also visible that one mink is killed by kicking. In the cart, into which dead animals are thrown, you can clearly see the minks, which are still breathing, and their bodies are crushed by the bodies of their companions.
“Slaughterers clearly do not have the required skills and knowledge to perform this slaughter,” says Bogna Wiltowska, Director of Investigations in Open Cages, “Animals are thrown into the box very carelessly, some minks are knocked down by hitting, trampling - such practices have no right to take place on a fur farm. This is yet another investigation that shows the scale of suffering of animals on legally operating fur farms”, adds Wiltowska.
In addition to the negligence of the people carrying out the slaughter, the activists also documented the inside of the gassing box. The recordings show minks suffocating with gas, active for several dozen seconds, running around the box, trying to get fresh air every time the lid is opened. The animals fight for life until the last moment, until they finally die in agony.
“Fur farmers often say that minks are "put to sleep" and that this is one of the most humane methods of slaughter” comments Bogna Wiltowska, “Our investigation, as well as the investigations of other animal rights organizations, clearly shows that gassing has nothing to do with painless slaughter, and in addition it is ineffective and some animals survive this process.”
Open Cages sent a notice to the prosecutor's office about the possibility of committing an animal abuse crime. The association is represented by legal counsel Angelika Kimbort.
This investigation is the first of its kind. But one of many investigations on fur farms conducted by Otwarte Klatki in Poland (you can check the previous one on our blog). Poland, one of the largest fur producers, is still waiting for the ban on fur farming.