Further to this previous post and a phone call and an email to Woolworths, I have received this reply. I leave you, dear Reader, to your own thoughts on this reply.
Date: Fri, 22 May 2009 15:55:54 +1000
Thank you for your correspondence regarding the recent media comments
relating to a Tasmanian piggery.
Woolworths became aware of an issue at this particular farm some five
weeks ago. Upon being made aware we immediately sent our head livestock
buyer to the farm to conduct an inspection. We were not happy with the
conditions and issued the farmer with a list of improvements to be made
by Friday 15th May. It should be noted that this work was in addition to
a work order issued by the Tasmanian Department of Primary Industry
Given the fact that this piggery is a long standing supplier to
Woolworths and others, with no prior history of poor practice, we opted
to give this farm a chance to improve. This was decided on the basis
that if improvements were not made to our satisfaction then we would
cease to do business with this producer.
Our livestock team has visited the piggery on three occasions over this
period and we are satisfied that the improvements we stipulated have
been made in full. DPI Tasmania and the RSPCA have also visited the farm
in conjunction with the Woolworths livestock team and are also now
satisfied that the animal welfare standards on the farm meet acceptable
This farm was subject to an independent audit process and was last
audited in November 2008. No major issues were raised on this audit. We
can only presume that conditions deteriorated rapidly in recent months.
We believe this to be an isolated incident that reflects badly on the
generally high standard of practice from other pig producers in
Prior to this incident, Woolworths had already begun a process of
reviewing animal welfare standards across the business. This work
Again, thank you for taking the time to contact us about this particular
General Manager Fresh Foods