Hormel Foods phasing out use of small crates for confining pregnant hogs by end of 2017, company says

MINNEAPOLIS , February 3, 2012 () – Hormel Foods Corp.'s company-owned farms are phasing out the use of small metal crates for confining pregnant hogs by the end of 2017.

It's a move being welcomed by the Humane Society of the United States. The group has been campaigning for an end to the use of gestation crates, saying they severely restrict the animals' movements.

Hormel is the maker of Spam canned meat, Cure 81 hams and Black Label bacon.

Matthew Dominguez, public policy manager for the society's farm animal protection campaign, said the first word his group got of Hormel's change in policy was at the company's shareholders meeting in Minnesota Tuesday night.

Six weeks ago, the world's largest pork producer, Smithfield Foods Inc., said it would stop using gestation crates at its facilities by 2017.

© 2021 Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.