27 piggeries exposed so far: we've closed 2, with 25 still open. Know of one near you? Let us know.
Location: Redlands Road, Corowa NSW
Owned by: Rivalea Australia
Status: Open and operating
Phone: (02) 6033 8333
The Corowa Piggery is the largest piggery in the southern hemisphere, with 45000 sows (as of 2010). The slaughterhouse/abattoir on the same property is the largest pig abattoir in Australia, with a capacity of up to 1 million kills per year.
The Corowa Abattoir uses carbon dioxide gas (CO2) to render the pigs unconscious before they are killed; this is touted by the industry and RSPCA as the most "humane" method of slaughter particularly where such large numbers of pigs are involved. Free range pigs are sometimes killed at this abattoir, in the exact same manner, from Rivalea’s free range facility on the same property in Corowa. The slaughterhouse and piggery have a constant security patrol, and the slaughterhouse has CCTV cameras monitored 24/7 by Rivalea.
In a world-first, hidden cameras were placed inside the gas chamber in early 2014, revealing the suffering of every pig who goes through that system, screaming and thrashing for air as they are suffocated. At the entrance to the chamber, an employee leans over the terrified pigs, jabbing them repeatedly with an electric prodder to get them into the chamber. The pigs, who can hear the screams of those already in the chamber, often try to jump out over the walls; they do not want to go inside.
The video was sent to one of the world's foremost experts on pig behaviour and physiology, Professor Donald Broom at the University of Cambridge, who produced this scathing report on the practices uncovered by the footage. This report and the footage have been handed in to NSW Police in the hopes of gaining a conviction against Rivalea.
However, it is important to note that this facility is not a "one-off". These gas chambers have been installed in roughly 15 Australian slaughterhouses including all of the largest, and hundreds of slaughterhouses all over the world (see the list here). The vast majority of pigs in Australia are killed in this way.
The Corowa Piggery is made up of 5 modules, each of which is essentially a large, self-contained farrow to finish piggery. Footage and photographs were obtained by anonymous activists inside 3 of the 5 modules, depicting industry-standard cruelty such as:
Ultimate Holding Company