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On Giving Tuesday you can fight factory farm cruelty and help rescued animals

The Vancouver Humane Society and The Happy Herd Farm Sanctuary are partnering to raise funds to help animals now and in the future

Every year in Canada, more than 800 million animals are raised on cruel factory farms before they are sent for slaughter. They suffer from confinement and from being denied the chance to live and behave naturally.  Yet science has shown that each animal, just like your pet cat or dog, has his or her own unique personality. That’s why we say every animal is someone, not something.

This year, on Giving Tuesday, November 27th, we are again partnering with The Happy Herd Farm Sanctuary to make life better for farmed animals.  Giving Tuesday is the annual opportunity to put your dollars toward a cause that’s near and dear to your heart – this year, we hope you’ll make it the plight of animals on factory farms.  All donations will be split between both charities.

At VHS, we work year-round to draw public and media attention to the treatment of farmed animals. Our Go Veg campaign encourages people to try a plant-based diet, which reduces the demand that drives factory farming. We’ve launched our Meatless Monday initiative in 17 Metro Vancouver secondary and post-secondary schools, helping to introduce a compassionate, healthy and sustainable diet to the next generation.  And our rodeo campaign is exposing cruelty and showing that “livestock” are not just commodities to be brutalized for entertainment, but sentient animals capable of feeling physical and emotional pain.

Our partners at The Happy Herd Farm Sanctuary have shown how rescued farmed animals, free of cruelty and confinement, can flourish as individuals. The sanctuary provides a forever home for all types of animals where they can live out their entire lives in a beautiful, natural setting where they are treated with kindness and respect. Visiting Happy Herd and meeting the animals can be a life-changing experience. You will quickly see them as “friends, not food.”

On November 27th, you can donate directly to our joint appeal, but you can also help by supporting the generous (and cruelty-free) local businesses who are partnering with VHS and Happy Herd. On Giving Tuesday, they will be launching a variety of special offers and promotions, all raising funds to help us help animals.  Watch our website and social media channels for updates as we get closer to November 27th – or sign up for our action alerts.

Giving Tuesday is your chance to make life better for farmed animals.  Don’t miss it!



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Wild Trails Coffee in North Vancouver goes vegan

Wild Trails Coffee is a family-run coffee shop based in North Vancouver. VHS spoke with this mother-daughter team about their decision to make the coffee shop fully vegan and their commitment to helping protect animal welfare, the environment and public health. 

What inspired you to open Wild Trails Coffee and what do you think sets you apart from other coffee shops? 

We’re a mother-daughter team and my mom opened this shop about 30 years ago. It used to be called Mothers Herbs. When I became involved about five years ago I wanted to focus on coffees and a lot of inspiration came from my love of hiking. I spent a year working on our coffee syrups, perfecting them using real organic ingredients and no chemicals or fake added sugars.

As a business owner I didn’t want to cut corners and care only about profit. You can be a business that does well while caring about the Earth, animals and people, and that’s what we do at Wild Trails Coffee and what we’re about. We are a business that cares about doing our part to make the world a better place and will go the extra mile for people, animals and the planet.

You recently posted online about the shop’s decision to ditch dairy and go fully vegan – can you tell us about the motivation behind that decision?

I’ve been vegan for a long time now and it just never felt right using dairy, so my mom and I decided to replace it with dairy-free alternatives in the shop and now our shop is 100% vegan! We didn’t think so many people would care, but we were blown away by the support and we knew we made the right choice.

You also talk about the shop’s commitment to sustainability on your website – can you tell us about that?

We work hard to reduce our environmental footprint. All of our cups, straws and lids are compostable and we also compost everything we can within the shop. We work with a company to recycle the rest and even go through our garbage at the end of the day to make sure everything that can be recycled is.

What are your most popular items?

Our specialty coffee drinks, like our Wedgemount Lake Vanilla Latte and Elsay Lake Pumpkin Spice Latte are among our most popular items. We use real pumpkin and vanilla bean for our syrups. Our smoothies are very popular as well and we don’t use any ice, just frozen organic fruit. We also use water kefir as the base for our smoothies, which is a dairy-free probiotic that’s made in-house with spring water collected weekly from a local spring.

Elsay Lake Pumpkin Spice Latte
Wedgemount Lake Vanilla Latte










Do you have any helpful advice for other restaurants and businesses who might be considering going vegan?

Go for it! We need more businesses to stand up for animals and as business owners who care about these issues we recognized we were in a position to do more. There’s growing support and more people are embracing veganism every day! It’s also a great way to educate people about the impact of our food choices and to lead by example.

Wild Trails Coffee is located at 134 East 14th Street, North Vancouver. You can reach them at 604-988-4372 or follow them on facebook and instagram

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Ditch dairy for these great alternatives

In an effort to promote the consumption of dairy products, the dairy industry has dubbed June “National Dairy Month”. But with milk consumption steadily declining in Canada and more people embracing healthier, humane and less resource-intensive dairy alternatives, we prefer to celebrate June as “National Dairy-Free Month”.

In the last few years the variety of dairy-free products on grocery store shelves has grown significantly, including almond, soy, coconut, pea and oat milks and creamers and dairy-free butters, sour cream, cheeses, ice creams and yogurts.

A number of factors have contributed to the growing demand for dairy alternatives, including increased public awareness of both animal welfare and environmental issues related to the dairy industry, as well as a growing body of scientific evidence that questions the industry’s health claims.

Take the Chilliwack Cattle Sales cruelty case as an example. Chilliwack Cattle Sales is one of Canada’s largest dairy farms and a major supplier to Dairyland. In 2014 an undercover investigation revealed horrendous acts of animal cruelty taking place on the farm. While the farm’s owners claimed to have no knowledge of the abuse and suggested it was not reflective of their company’s standards, the undercover investigator repeatedly reported concerns to the owners and no corrective action was taken. In addition, a lawyer for one of the workers charged painted a picture of a “toxic” work culture at Chilliwack Cattle Sales and the same farm had also previously been investigated for animal welfare issues back in 2008.

Time and again, undercover investigations have shed light on what is a systemic culture of cruelty within today’s animal agriculture industry.  Meanwhile, animal welfare is routinely compromised through standard practices in dairy farming. B.C. Milk Marketing Board inspection documents over an 18-month period revealed that one in four farms in the province failed to comply with the provincial animal-welfare Code of Practice. Starting in January, 2015, the inspections revealed cases of overcrowding, lame or soiled cattle, tails torn off by machinery, branding and dehorning of calves without pain medication, and cows lying on concrete. 20 of 73 farms, or 27 per cent, required “corrective action” after on-site inspections. About 10 per cent were still not compliant on a follow-up inspection. Another inherent issue with this industry is the separation of dairy calves from their mothers in order to collect the milk for human consumption.

It’s no wonder that consumers are increasingly dropping dairy and instead opting for alternatives. So, in honour of “National Dairy-Free Month”, we’d like to highlight just a few of our favourite dairy alternatives:

Milks & Creamers


Ice Cream


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Meatless Monday is on the menu at Kwantlen Polytechnic

Kwantlen Polytechnic University’s food service provider, Sodexo, and the school’s “Let’s Be Compassionate” club recently joined forces to raise awareness of the University’s involvement in the increasingly popular Meatless Monday movement.

The two groups organized a Meatless Monday outreach event at the Surrey campus, where they distributed information about the benefits of a plant-based diet and samples of the cafeteria’s Meatless Monday options. Students who stopped by the table were able to sample wraps, chili, 3-bean soup and hummus with pita chips and learn about how a plant-based diet helps tackle factory farming and climate change, while also protecting against preventable health conditions like heart disease, stroke, cancer, and diabetes.

“Being able to educate and share information about veganism, plant-based eating and animal welfare with the students at Kwantlen has been a really positive experience so far,” said club member, Sasha. “One of the greatest parts of promoting a plant-based diet is the satisfied and surprised look on people’s faces when they try the samples. We’re helping show them that meals without meat can taste even better and that eliminating meat from their diet one day a week can easily turn into seven days a week!”

A recent survey by Dalhousie University revealed similar enthusiasm for meat reduction, with nearly 40% of British Columbians 35 and under indicating they follow a vegetarian or vegan diet. The national survey also suggested that British Columbia is leading the way when it comes to eating meatless.

“Skipping meat one day a week is good for you and better for the planet,” said Sodexo Marketing Coordinator, Colleen Dang-Wong. “Together with the Let’s Be Compassionate Club, we can educate our campus community on the benefits of plant-based eating and what we offer on campus to support this global initiative.”

Kwantlen joins 16 other Metro Vancouver secondary and post-secondary schools that are participating in Meatless Monday. In addition to the items sampled during the outreach event, other meatless menu options include a veggie burger (which can be made vegan), as well as grab and go vegan salad options.

Follow Kwantlen’s lead by pledging to go meatless on Mondays and we’ll send you a weekly recipe to help you along! Check out to learn more and to support our effort to bring the initiative to more classrooms, cafeterias and communities. Interested in bringing Meatless Monday to your school, workplace or community? Get in touch with Program Coordinator, Emily Pickett, to learn more.

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Factory farming: A problem with solutions

A farmer veterinary walks inside a poultry farm

Two recent news stories underscore why factory farming must end and how some powerful interests are working to make that happen.

Last week, A new study found compelling  and disturbing evidence that a novel form of the dangerous superbug Methicillin-Resistant Staphylococcus Aureus (MRSA) can spread to humans through consumption or handling of contaminated poultry.

“We’ve known for several years that people working directly with livestock are at increased risk for MRSA infections, but this is one of the first studies providing compelling evidence that everyday consumers are also potentially at risk,” said one of the authors of the study.

Intensive farming practices, which often involve giving food animals low doses of antibiotics to encourage fast growth and compensate for overcrowding and unsanitary living conditions, has led to the spread of superbugs like MRSA.  Those same conditions, which billions of animals around the world must endure, are the reason animal advocates have called for an end to factory farming on animal welfare grounds.

Animal suffering and dangerous superbugs are, of course, not the only unwanted consequences of industrialized animal agriculture.  Intensive farming also degrades our environment, including contributing 14.5 per cent of all greenhouse gases to global climate change. It uses up huge amounts of land, water and energy.  And, not least, its end product is meat – the overconsumption of which can be damaging to human health.

The other related news story acknowledges these problems and offers solutions.  This week, a group of 40 investors managing $1.25 trillion in assets launched a campaign to encourage 16 global food companies to shift from selling meat to selling plant protein. “The world’s over reliance on factory farmed livestock to feed the growing global demand for protein is a recipe for a financial, social and environmental crisis,” said the investor leading the initiative.

The meat and livestock sector is no longer just the target of grassroots activists and animal advocates.  The world, including the world of finance, is waking up to just how unsustainable this industry is.

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A chance to speak up for farm animals



The federal, provincial and territorial governments are asking for comments on plans for the future of agriculture in Canada, providing an opportunity to raise issues about the treatment of farm animals.

Phase 2 of the consultation is open until November 30 and includes options to fill in an online questionnaire, email your comments or write a letter. Please take the time to contribute your views about animal welfare and the future of animal agriculture.

The consultation refers to the government’s plan, called The Calgary Statement – the Next Policy Framework, which sets out several Priority Areas:

Markets and trade
Science, research and innovation
Risk management
Environmental sustainability and climate change
Value-added agriculture and agri-food processing
Public Trust

Following are some key points from our submission to the consultation (full submission here):

Markets and Trade

Canada should develop markets for plant-based protein instead of animal-based protein, which contributes to environmental degradation, is resource-intensive and is dependent on inhumane confinement systems.

Science, research and innovation

Canada should invest in research and development of plant-based protein, especially the production and processing of pulse crops.  In contrast to animal protein production, pulses have been shown to be environmentally beneficial (requiring relatively little water and fertilizer), healthy and sustainable.  A number of innovative plant-based industries have emerged in recent years, attracting investment and consumer interest.

Risk management

The livestock sector has a number of inherent risks, including:

– negative environmental impacts (e.g. greenhouse gas emissions)
– zoonotic disease outbreaks (e.g. avian flu, listeria, e. coli)
– consumer rejection of inhumane, intensive confinement systems (e.g. battery cages for laying hens) and other animal welfare concerns
– consumer health concerns over meat consumption (e.g. cancer risk of red and processed meats)
– rise of antbiotic resistance due to overuse of antibiotics in livestock

Environmental sustainability and climate change

Globally, the meat and livestock sector contributes 14.5% of all greenhouse gases, which is more than the transportation sector.  It is also resource-intensive – it is the world’s largest user of agricultural land, through grazing and the use of feed crops. The sector is also a major contributor to water pollution and loss of biodiversity.

Public Trust

Canadian consumers have many concerns about animal agriculture.

Currently, animal agriculture in Canada involves the confinement and suffering of millions of animals.  Animal welfare should be a top priority in the development of agricultural policy. Currently, there are no mandatory animal welfare standards in Canada, only voluntary Codes of Practice.  These should be replaced with mandatory standards enforced by independent, third-party inspections.

The meat and livestock sector is dependent on intensive confinement systems (factory farms) that compromise animal welfare and degrade the environment. In addition, the overconsumption of meat has been shown to be harmful to human health.  Consequently, this sector is unsustainable.  Consumers will lose faith in agriculture if these problems persist.

Resources should be shifted to the development of a plant-based protein sector, including more support for Canada’s production, processing and marketing of pulses (peas, beans, lentils). Plant-based diets should be promoted through public information programs and support for initiatives like Meatless Monday.

Such initiatives would earn public trust, as they benefit the environment, public health and animal welfare.

Your participation in this consultation will ensure that animals are not forgotten in the development of Canada’s agricultural policies.

More info:

CBC News story


Twitter: #agnpf



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Here’s the scoop on Vancouver’s Nice Vice Creamery


Nice Vice is Vancouver’s first ever 0% dairy, plant-based micro creamery, which opened in Yaletown in February. VHS talked recently to owner-operator Chris White about starting up a plant-based business. Here’s our Q&A with him:


1. What inspired you to open Nice Vice?

I opened up Nice Vice Creamery after visiting many of the fantastic artisanal ice cream and gelato establishments around the city and never having very many D-F options. When I was making so many different flavours at home, my sons inspired me to open up a dairy-free scoop shop.

2. How have you found the reaction from the community?

Absolutely fantastic! I believed that Vancouver was ready to support a 100% dairy-free, plant-based vice cream shop. I think the awareness of plant-based foods has become much more positive in the last few years.

3. What do you enjoy most about running the business?

I love working the front counter and interacting with people. We have received so much good energy from our patrons you can’t help but feel good behind there.

4. What do you find is the hardest part?

We opened up an ice cream store during the winter,with a new brand, with a new product, and in a new location! We made it as hard as possible to succeed. So, if we can get through this and become profitable then we will achieve success.

5. How do you stay positive in a world where animal-based products are still so predominate?

I focus on how aware society is becoming about the positive aspects of choosing a plant-based product over the negative realities of animal-based products. After all, that is one of the motivating factors behind Nice Vice – the ability to participate in change through positive vibrations of consuming vice cream.

6. What is your most popular menu item?

Besides several of our classics, our Instagram @nicevicecream has our new flavours which regularly sell out within a day or two. (Buzz’d Coffee or Strawberry Lychee anyone?)

7. Who are your customers? Is there a predominate demographic?

When I wrote the marketing plan, I assumed that health conscious females between the age of 15-35 would be our predominate SHUs (Super Heavy Users). However, we have been surprised to see an equal number of male customers as well and, pleasantly, we seem to be catching on in the Asian community where over 70% of that ethnic group is lactose intolerant.

8. What do you think is the best way to encourage consumers to make more ethical choices?

This is a good question. At Nice Vice I tell our employees not to judge anyone for any choices they make. We believe that education and awareness of the ethical benefits of a plant-based diet are being portrayed by documentaries auch as Cowspiracy, Earthlings, and Forks over Knives. When the conversation comes up between a customer as to why I am plant-based, I point the customer to these three documentaries to guide them in their own decision making.

9. Do you think plant-based products and businesses are becoming more mainstream?

Absolutely! Plant-based food products and restaurants are the fastest growing sectors in their respective industries. The shift has happened because there is largely no where else to grow. Just look at Ben & Jerrys and the number of new vegan restaurants that have opened this year in Vancouver alone. We are at the beginning of a monumental shift in consumer choice. And thank God for that!!!

10. What are some of the lessons you’ve learned about running a plant-based business?

You can’t please everybody!! There is a wide variety of knowledge in society and we have experienced different levels of emotions from anger and anxiety to euphoria in our shop. Not everyone will believe in what we are doing as being positive – that is the reality and beauty of living in a free society. The other lesson is that dealing with the government can be challenging and requires patience and perseverance. The residual benefits of business are numerous and exciting! No matter what happens with Nice Vice, I can honestly say, I have never had a such a roller-coaster of emotions with this small business and the period of personal growth has been phenomenal.

Nice Vice Creamery is located at 1022 Mainland Street, Yaletown and is open 12-10 daily.

Tel: 778.379.6423


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Veggemo: A new plant-based alternative to dairy milk

Veggemo Product Line-Up Image

By Amy Balcome

It’s always exciting when a new plant-based company pops up on our radar and right in our own backyard. This local start-up is a first-of-its kind, offering people with nut, seed, soy and gluten allergies a chance to enjoy a plant-based milk beverage made from veggies. Introducing Veggemo with three fantastic flavours to choose from: Original, Unsweetened, and Vanilla.

Over the years, studies have shown a decline in dairy milk sales and more consumers have been leaning towards plant-based milks, whether it be for clean eating, a cruelty-free approach or because of allergies/sensitivities. Whatever the reason, choosing a plant-based milk is better for you, the animals and the environment.

There are many types of plant-based milks, which are mostly derived from nuts, seeds and grains. Veggemo says it did a great deal of research to create a creamy milk beverage using a blend of pea protein, tapioca from cassava root and the starch from potatoes to reach its satisfying taste, which can be enjoyed in smoothies, cereal, creamy entrees or desserts. They appear to have gone to great lengths to ensure their product is sourced from non-GMO suppliers and their peas are processed by a Belgian company instead of being shipped to China for processing, as many other companies do.

Along with Veggemo’s naturally occurring nutrients from vegetables, this product is fortified with important vitamins to contribute to a balanced plant-based beverage. It’s also carrageen-free. Veggemo offers low calories and sugar per serving and is high in protein, allowing it to be nutritionally on par with other non-dairy milks. It’s hard to miss their eye-catching containers on supermarket shelves. On your next grocery shop outing be on the lookout for Veggemo in a store near you.

More on the growth of plant-based industries in B.C.

Vancouver Sun article on growth of local plant-based companies.




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Going veg? Here’s what to stock up on


Vegetarian Sandwich Wrap or burrito made up of saute yellow squash, zucchini, bell peppers and onions rolled in a corn tortilla with rice and diced tomatoes and goat cheese and drizzled with a balsamic vinaigrette. Wrap is served with a baby lettuce salad.



If you’re transitioning to a plant-based diet, it’s important to stock up on some of the staples that are essential to a meat and dairy-free lifestyle. Below, we’ve compiled a list of key food ingredients and products that will help anyone going veg.  It’s by no means exhaustive and we encourage you to explore the many sources of information on plant-based eating available online. (At the bottom of this page we list some of our favourite sites.)





Alternative milks Almond, soy, rice, cashew are the most common. A new product is Veggemo, which claims to be “the first non-dairy beverage originating from veggies.”

Buttery spread (homemade): Store-bought, non-hydrogenated Earth Balance is popular. There have been concerns about its use of palm oil, which is destructive to wildlife habitat. However, the company has said it will use only sustainably produced palm oil by the end of 2015.

Dairy-free cheese: Vancouver-based Daiya melts like the real thing. Chao Slices are getting good reviews.

Cream cheese (homemade): Store-bought products include: Tofutti, Daiya, Go Veggie and Follow Your Heart all offer vegan cream cheese.

Sour cream (homemade): Ready-made brands include Tofutti, Follow Your Heart

Dairy-free yogurt (product reviews)





Gardein does a range of healthy meat replacement products including veggie burgers, “chick’n scallopini”, holiday roasts and even “fishless filets.”

Tofurkey is famous for its holiday roasts but also does a range of meatless products

Field Roast is probably best known for its amazing meatless sausages but also makes roasts, slices and other products.


Yves does a range of meat substitutes, including burgers, sausages and bacon.

Veggie burgers (homemade) Store-bought (frozen and refrigerated) includes Gardein; Yves and Sol, which are some of the main Canadian brands.




While ready-made meat substitutes can be quick and convenient, many people prefer less processed and more natural sources of plant-based protein.

Tofu: A long-time staple of meat free eating.

Tempeh: Soybean-based meat substitute.

Seitan: Made from wheat gluten, seitan is high in protein and has a meaty texture

Edamame (recipes): These young, green soy beans make a great high-protein snack.

Pulses (beans, dried peas, chickpeas, lentils): Dried and home-cooked are cheap and the healthiest but canned are convenient.

Nuts and seeds: High in protein and healthy fats. Cashews are especially useful as they can be soaked and used in a variety of ways.

Nut butters: Peanut butter is the best known but almond butter, cashew butter and others are increasingly popular.

Egg alternatives (for baking): Follow Your Heart has developed the VeganEgg, which can be scrambled and used in omelettes.

Mayonnaise alternatives (homemade): Store-bought brands include Vegenaise, Earth Balance’s Mindful Mayo.  The latest (and best, according to some) is Just Mayo, although it is not yet widely available in Canada (Costco has had it in stock).





Brown rice: More nutritious than white.

QuinoaA great plant-based complete protein.

Steel-cut oats: Good for breakfast.

Whole-wheat couscous: More nutritious than regular.



ONLINE RESOURCES (Plant-based recipes, nutrition advice):

Vegan Health:
Minimalist Baker:
Vegan Richa:


LOWER MAINLAND GROCERS (Stocking many plant-based staples)

Donald’s Market
Whole Foods
Choices Markets
Vegan Essentials (online store)
Eternal Abundance
Sweet Cherubim
Famous Foods

Looking for more plant-based inspiration? Whether you’re going meatless on Mondays or every day, take our Meatless Monday pledge to receive a weekly plant-based recipe via email.








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Still no charges in dairy cruelty case

It has now been one year since the BC SPCA recommended criminal animal cruelty charges against eight employees at Chilliwack Cattle Sales, Canada’s largest dairy producer, and many months since provincial animal cruelty charges were recommended against the company itself. Yet, Crown prosecutors have still yet to come to a decision about laying charges.

For its part, the BC SPCA responded quickly, conducting a raid on the facility and recommending animal cruelty charges within days of receiving video and written evidence covertly obtained by an employee over the course of four weeks last spring.

The delay is unusual and concerning. Prosecutors have been presented with incontrovertible evidence of animals being routinely whipped, kicked, and punched in their faces, bodies, and testicles. Still more animals were documented on video suffering from untreated gruesome injuries and infections.

Internationally respected bovine expert and veterinarian Dr. James Reynolds commented that the video depicted “the most severe cases of animal abuse I have ever seen in 32 years.”

Worse, the company itself appears to have been complicit in the abuse and neglect, despite attempting to distance itself from the employees during the public outcry that followed the footage’s release. The whistleblower stated that he repeatedly brought his concerns to management, which failed to act; several more fired employees came forward to say that they were unfairly taking the fall for a company that created and condoned the apparent widespread culture of cruelty.

Yet, Chilliwack Cattle Sales continues to operate with impunity, milking a staggering 3500 cows three times each day.

It did not take long for the BC Milk Marketing Board to act. By last September, the regulator had made the standards in the national dairy code of practice mandatory, effective virtually immediately. Such actions by provincial regulators are all the more important in Canada’s supply-managed dairy industry, where milk is pooled and dairy processors cannot set animal welfare standards for their suppliers—a tactic commonly used in other countries.

This case presented a unique opportunity for prosecutors to take farmed animal cruelty as seriously as it ought to be. We killed 740 million animals for food in 2014, making farmed animals by far the largest population of animals under human care (by contrast, there are about 15 million pets in Canada). However, these pigs, chickens, turkeys, and cows are kept largely in windowless sheds on private property, entirely shielded from the scrutiny of law enforcement, which is unable to inspect farms without first receiving a complaint from the public.

Unsurprisingly, on the rare occasion that complaints about farmed animal cruelty are received, they come from neighbours concerned about neglect on small operations, where animals may be visible. Employees at factory farms are unlikely to report abuse when their livelihood is at stake, or when they may be reporting on their friends—or themselves.

In the case of Chilliwack Cattle Sales, however, not only was an employee able to obtain evidence of illegal animal cruelty, he was able to actually document malicious abuses while they were being committed, rather than simply after-the-fact conditions of neglect.

Although animal cruelty laws in this country are regularly criticized for being weak, the reality is that provincial and federal law are clear that animal abuse and neglect are illegal. National codes of practice, created with government funding, set standards of care that arguably form a part of the law.

However, these laws are meaningless without adequate enforcement. Barriers to enforcement admittedly do exist—farmed animals are out of sight, law enforcement only acts in response to public complaints, and cruelty laws are mostly enforced by private bodies that are underfunded (the BC SPCA, for example, receives no government funding and must fundraise for all of its operating expenses, from sheltering animals to investigating cruelty).

But when a robust file of evidence virtually falls into prosecutors’ laps along with charge recommendations from law enforcement, farmed animals at last have an opportunity for swift justice.

Let’s hope the concerning one-year delay ultimately results in meaningful prosecutorial action against Chilliwack Cattle Sales. Anything less sends the message that illegal animal cruelty is a permitted ingredient in Canada’s food supply.