Are Undercover Videos Really Telling the Truth about Farming and Ranching?

Animal safety, health and comfort are top priorities for farmers and ranchers. They care deeply about their animals and take pride in how they provide for them.

There is sometimes a misconception about farmers and ranchers as many undercover videos portray them in a light that is not true. The Farmer’s Daughter for example demonstrates this misconception in a blog called, “’Undercover’ Videos Show What They Want You to See, Not the Reality of Farming”, where she shows how the lighting and music can change the perception of a video as it is viewed.

Farmers and ranchers often go above and beyond to care for their animals – whether that’s helping a sow (female pig) through a difficult birth, bringing a newborn calf indoors during a cold winter night, or providing medical attention and treatment when an animal is sick. And while opinions regarding management techniques for animal safety and health can differ, it’s important that all farmers and ranchers work together to communicate to consumers why they have chosen a specific management style for their animals.

Animal abuse, and anyone performing these acts towards animals, is subject prosecution under the law. There are many quality assurance programs which help farmers and ranchers stay up to date with the best management practices for the well-being of their farm animals.
Some examples include:

  • Beef Quality Assurance® (cattle farmer and rancher funded) program outlines recommendations, training and a code of ethics for raising beef cattle. The program provides ranchers with the latest management techniques and promotes a commitment to quality within every segment of the beef industry.
  • Pork Quality Assurance® program, created by the National Pork Board more than 20 years ago, provides the latest knowledge on animal care and the use of animal health products. We Care® initiative also helps farmers who are involved in the care of pigs learn how to conduct themselves and to make sure they are doing the right thing every day.
  • The National Dairy FARM Program®, created by the National Milk Producer’s Federation, assists dairy farmers with committing to the highest standards of animal care and quality assurance.
  • National Chicken Council provides standards for their farmers and ranchers and also trains third-party auditors on their standards.

See these other posts that highlight animal welfare and undercover videos: