More than 3000 people have signed a petition to Parliament to ban the import of pork from countries that do not have equivalent animal welfare standards to New Zealand. NZ Pork says more than half of the pork imported to New Zealand comes from the United States, Poland and Spain, which routinely castrate male pigs without pain relief. NZ Pork chief executive Brent Kleiss says cheaper “unethical” pork being imported is “undercutting” New Zealand’s efforts to improve animal welfare. Other NZ standards NOT upheld in some countries include keeping sows in cages during pregnancy and the use of growth-promoting antibiotics. About 60% of pork or 70,000 tonnes is imported each year and Brent Kleiss says the local industry does not produce enough pork to meet demand, but he hopes it will be able to in time.
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