The Despair in These Pigs’ Eyes Is Enough to Make Anyone Rethink Eating Bacon

Posted by 2 years ago | Permalink | Comments (73)

In the UK, many of us have only a vague idea about where our food comes from.

The huge industrial farms where animals spend their entire lives are usually out of sight – and out of mind for many people who grab pre-packaged bacon or chops from the supermarket without considering who they’re really eating.

One activist wanted to help people understand the reality of factory farming.

One night, he sneaked onto a pig farm with his camera to bear witness to these animals’ lives. Here’s what he found, in his own words and images.

Sad pig face

“We could not bear to remain in the small room for very long at all as the air was thick with ammonia. The stench was outrageous. The camera lens rapidly fogged due to the humidity, and the pigs shared the room with hundreds of black flies. This was sickening abuse. Within minutes of having been in this room my throat began to hurt and I developed cold symptoms, which lasted nearly two days.”

Caged piglets

“The animals are kept in sickeningly cruel conditions, with not an ounce of straw to be seen anywhere – only bare, hard floors in dark over-crowded sheds.”

UK pig farm

Pigs in pens“Home is a tiny cage for each of these non-human people. There is insufficient room for them to even turn around.”

Pigs in crates“Many pigs displayed multiple long scratches over their bodies.”

PIg close-up

“The farm, by the way, is a Red Tractor approved farm, despite the deplorable conditions.”

Pig mother

“I’m glad I didn’t have the misfortune to be born a factory farmed pig. This is how they spend their lives; in filthy overcrowded pens within dark sheds.”

Single sick pig


On UK factory farms, docking pigs’ tails, grinding down their sensitive teeth and confining them to tiny farrowing crates is standard practice. It’s perfectly normal for animals to spend their entire lives crammed into filthy enclosures without ever seeing daylight – except, perhaps, from the windows of the lorry as they’re transported to slaughter.

Pigs are more intelligent than dogs. When you look at their faces, it’s as if they know they have nothing to look forward to. As soon as they grow big enough – reaching what, in the industry, is known as “slaughter weight” – they’ll be sent to an abattoir to have their throats cut and their bodies dismembered in order to be sold in a supermarket aisle or butcher’s counter.

Of course, we don’t have to support the hopeless and painful existence these animals are forced to endure. We can choose to eat other foods – ones that don’t cause animal suffering.

For healthy, tasty and cruelty-free recipes, plus tips on vegan living, look no further than our free vegan starter kit!

All photos: © Pacificus

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  • marie commented on May 28, 2015 at 3:43 pm

    why can no one help these poor babies the world gone mad iits heartbreaking to see any animal suffer time people were locked up thrown away the key

  • L Jennings commented on May 28, 2015 at 3:46 pm

    I once ended a potentially wonderful relationship with a man because he was a pig farmer who’s idea of humanity was to allow his animals to live in filth and squalor, often in pens knee deep in urine and filth, often with broken limbs because underneath the flood, there were huge gaps in the concrete where the poor animals had fallen, gotten stuck and broken legs etc. Had I been braver, older and wiser, I would have reported him to the RSPCA but they probably wouldn’t have done anything anyway. There is no one to stop this, but us.

    • Baida commented on November 3, 2015 at 4:13 pm

      Get a very big group the more people u can find is voice out to the government about this matter.

  • Conny commented on May 28, 2015 at 3:49 pm

    It is so sad to see animals have to liv this way. And so many people don, t care. It, s heartbreaking

  • norma commented on May 28, 2015 at 4:09 pm

    This is terrible how these animals live this has to be stopped

  • Eva atack commented on May 28, 2015 at 5:08 pm

    This is so hard to see
    wish everybody could see this pictures, of poor defenceless pigs, being so mistreated
    They dissurv a humanlife ,even if they are being “food” ❤

  • Sally commented on May 28, 2015 at 6:26 pm

    I’m absolutely appalled at there poor shit short lives it’s bad enough it’s short and crap without filthy cramped and dark man should be given the same treatment

  • Camilla McConnachie commented on May 28, 2015 at 6:47 pm

    Disgusting…there’s no need to eat meat

    • Jeremy Hunter commented on June 13, 2015 at 4:41 pm

      What has “need” got to do with anything? Lots of animals don’t “need” to eat meat, why should we be obliged to make this choice and how is that different from forcing animals into an unnatural diet?

      • Sue Ebbens commented on November 3, 2015 at 6:24 pm

        Its not the fact of eating meat. Its the fact of how animals destined to be eaten are treated before death. I live in Wiltshire where we have huge fields, with straw filled shelters in them, and the pigs root around happily in large groups, and sleep together in a warm straw filled shelter. Their meat probably costs more……but i always make sure my ham etc comes from pigs that live like this. THAT is the way to ensure a decent life for a meat animal, by buying (and being prepared to pay more) from outside reared animals. The desire to eat meat will never leave humans (we evolved doing it) so make the choice to only buy meat from this kind of farm. Ask your supermarket. Waitrose is good for this…

  • carol oakes commented on May 28, 2015 at 6:54 pm

    It is so sad that animals are hurt & eaten & that some people can actually kill them to eat them …..barbaric

    • Sue Ebbens commented on November 3, 2015 at 6:27 pm

      Not Barbaric to kill animals…The WAY they are killed can be barbaric , and the way they are forced to live , if they are factory farmed, as opposed to living an organic, outdoor life before slaughter. Lions, wolves etc can be barbaric…. and we evolved as apex prey animals , just like them.

  • Brigitte Allen commented on May 28, 2015 at 6:59 pm

    I am glad that we have the opportunity to find out in what conditions these animals are bred. Many of us care about the dog meat trady but this is happening on our door step! We need to unite to allow these poor creatures a dignified existence even if it means that at the end of the day they are part of the food chain. The way it is now is just not good enough!

  • ERMIONE THEODOROU commented on May 28, 2015 at 8:08 pm

    Makes me sick what a cruel evil world we live in and animals are the ones that get the worst abusive evil treatment they have hearts and feel just like we do and how anyone can treat them like this and sleep at night is beyond me but its all down to money

  • Angy commented on May 28, 2015 at 8:54 pm

    this must be made illegal it’s disgusting I am never eating bacon again horrific what do people need to do to help stop this

  • Diane callender commented on May 28, 2015 at 9:03 pm

    Perhaps the general public need to pay this place a visit
    Where is it in the uk

  • margaret wilson commented on May 28, 2015 at 9:12 pm

    Unnessary, cruel and barbaric. Shame on you Britain.

    • L Jennings commented on June 9, 2015 at 8:44 am

      Oh please, Britain has one of the highest animal welfare legislation in the world. Yes some places like this slip through the system but many many farms are vetted and checked for animal abuse conditions. If you want to have a go at a country, look at China, or any of the far eastern countries. There, they don’t even have Human Rights’ acts so what hope for their animals. Type ‘Yulin Ceremony’ into Google and watch people torturing and eating dogs and cats for fun. While we’re at it, if half of you lot bleating about these poor pigs were to start physically protesting in your own back yards, changes might happen instead of just ‘not eating bacon’ and sitting on your fat arses.

      • Di D commented on October 1, 2015 at 12:18 am
      • Sian commented on November 3, 2015 at 4:24 pm

        If every family cut down their meat content, or gave it up the impact would be huge. The current demand of a growing population is what pushes farmers to produce more meat, more cheaply. Some people may use the argument ‘its natural to eat meat’ but factory farming is anything but natural. We do what we can, most people may not be able to help the dogs in thailand, or the animals in china, but we CAN stop fueling the meat industry here at home.
        And I challenge you to find a vegan with a fat arse 😉 we are healthy, have lower cholesterol, less carcinogens, saturated fat, sugars and i have never had so much energy!

      • blizlady commented on November 3, 2015 at 11:23 pm

        Good points L Jennings. What people are seeing here is very rare, and as you said this may have slipped through the cracks. Is there a date as to when this was taken?

  • catherine commented on May 28, 2015 at 10:23 pm

    Totally devastating can’t stand it upsets me to much poor little inocent animals never harmed anyone but great harm and abuse they get just for peoples pleasure of eating them.The public should know how awful the animals in animal farms are treated for them to eat them,not to make out all the animals are brought up on dream farmlands and allow to run free and are happy and well looked after a complete lie and untrue.

  • Sherris Molloy commented on May 28, 2015 at 11:20 pm

    Inhumane. This is no respect for an animal that supplies you with food for your body to live. We do not have to have meat to live. So terrible.

  • Josephine Godwin commented on May 28, 2015 at 11:31 pm

    there are a few comments on the Facebook site saying that the photos are not taken at a UK farm. is this true and if not can the name and location of the farm be given out into the public ?

    • Anne commented on May 29, 2015 at 9:59 am

      Hi Josephine, it is our understanding that the activist who took the photos isn’t releasing the details into the public until the authorities have investigated. But sadly, we have seen many similar photos in the past from UK farms, and know that these conditions are fairly typical of how pigs are treated in this country. We’ve compiled some footage of supposedly ‘high welfare’ farms here:

      • blizlady commented on November 3, 2015 at 11:35 pm

        You are wrong Anne. These conditions are NOT typical of how pigs are treated in this country. In fact most pork producers no longer use gestation crates. PETA likes to show stuff like this and claim that this is how it is all over the world. There are numerous inspections and farmers. I have a friend who is a pork producer and this is not typical.

  • BEATRIZ commented on May 28, 2015 at 11:49 pm


  • Angela chapel commented on May 29, 2015 at 12:19 am

    Deeply saddened by the cruelty animals go through. It’s got to stop

  • Deb jones commented on May 29, 2015 at 6:57 am

    poor things!

  • Thejus commented on May 29, 2015 at 7:12 am

    Stop bacon.

  • Sharon Wood commented on May 29, 2015 at 8:08 am

    Why are human beings so callous? I’ve seen horrific footage from red tractor farms before ( chickens ) .Red tractor is just a guise for people to think they are buying meat from animals that have had a good life, they should be boycotted.

  • Phyllis Bajer commented on May 29, 2015 at 8:32 am

    I am veggie now after my son informed me about factory farming. I miss bacon for breakfast and sausages, but decided I could not in all conscience continue to enjoy something which cost another creature so much suffering. I know people unfriendly me from FB because I post stuff about animal cruelty and human rights, but I have a clear conscience. On the whole I feel better. I grow a lot of my own veg. Don’t have dairy produce either.

    • blizlady commented on November 3, 2015 at 11:41 pm

      Do you wear leather shoes and buy leather purses, leather belts and gloves? Pig skin is mainly used to make leather. This leather is used to make shoes, belts, work gloves, handbags, saddle seats, and many more items. .

  • eva sevinc Girit-azzolini commented on May 29, 2015 at 8:48 am

    poor poor animals.Please help

  • Jo commented on May 29, 2015 at 8:59 am

    This truly is despicable. What has happened to government proposals to ban factory farming. It would also be useful to suggest genuine free range alternatives that can be found . I for one wholly support the cause to stop this so called farming practice but also still eat organic and outdoor reared products.

  • Kerrie commented on May 29, 2015 at 11:42 am

    Disgrace. Shouldn’t be allowed to happen

    • Dee Everitt commented on May 29, 2015 at 7:52 pm

      Human disgrace

  • Vanessa Evans commented on May 29, 2015 at 12:38 pm

    How can this be legal? Where are the checks on these places?

  • Dee Everitt commented on May 29, 2015 at 7:48 pm

    Sub humans. I cannot take much more animal abuse. Karma is coming for the non human speakers. They have a voice. No one is listening

  • Peyton commented on May 30, 2015 at 10:30 am

    I wish people would wake up and smell the coffee! I’m very upset to see these pictures, it’s bad enough that these poor animals are going to be slauggted but for them to be abused before hand is disgusting! It’s barbaric how animals are treated!! :'( I wish people would just see the truth, what’s really going on. If I was there i’d have to break in & set them all free. I just can’t bare to see them like this, heart breaking 🙁

  • Gary commented on May 31, 2015 at 12:11 am

    How the human species treat other species on this planet is beyond me. Looking at these photos proves how cruel and evil mankind is. It’s tragic how people disregard an animals life just for the sake of their taste buds.

  • Deian Mountbatten commented on May 31, 2015 at 5:22 pm

    Eating any sort of meat-flesh must be forbidden by law, otherwise people won’t stop stuffing the front part of their faces with it. Eating a warmblooded mammal, an animal, is as cannibalistic as eating humans. We have to choose the one ruler who has the ability to take on responsibility and close down and dismantle all abattoirs. People who eat meat will then face jail sentences, eventually justice would then be done a tiny tiny bit compared to what mankind has done and still does to poor planet Earth and to all of God’s creatures.

  • lynne davies commented on June 6, 2015 at 12:51 pm

    I turned vegetation 30 years ago after seeing firsthand factory farmed pigs. One look into their mournful, despairing eyes convinced me that I could not condone such cruel and barbaric treatment of these intelligent animals. That it is still continuing today breaks my heart. Just because we “use” does not give us the right to “abuse”. MUST STOP*

  • Caroline commented on June 7, 2015 at 4:21 pm

    Thanks for all you do at PETAUK

  • Tania Debnath commented on June 10, 2015 at 12:26 pm

    Please please please please please help the poor pigs,cows, hens live their live..please shut down slaughter houses.. Every time i see such news i feel like committing suicide..i can’t even imagine how people can be so inhuman….the more i am getting to know about such hidden cruelty the more i am starting to hate humans… I think there should be a separate channel exposing such abuses and slaughters… Every individual should see and realize the fact that the food that is enjoyment for us is a big big tragedy for these innocent animals

  • Billy commented on June 16, 2015 at 2:10 pm

    Sickening these concentration plants is a cruel and terrible fate for pigs an animal that is highly intelligent. When will this horror end?

  • Billy commented on June 16, 2015 at 10:43 pm

    What a nightmare for the those poor pigs. It’s a blight and shame in humanity.

  • maria commented on November 3, 2015 at 2:11 pm

    please let these pigs roam and feel the grass under their feet give them some daylight its disgusting they are being kept in the dark in filthy conditions they are living beings the goverment should intervene and make sure all live stock are kept properly for god sake help them now

  • Emma commented on November 3, 2015 at 3:03 pm

    I’m sickened frustrated disgusted not enough words to describe how I feel needs to stop.

  • Nijsten commented on November 3, 2015 at 3:20 pm

    Respect all animals

  • Julie commented on November 3, 2015 at 3:46 pm

    Evil twisted and deranged people allow animals to live a life of horror

  • Gayle Brooks commented on November 3, 2015 at 3:49 pm

    My heart broke looking at the pictures of those poor pigs I can’t imagine how they feel this is barbaric and wrong we need to stop this cruelty now the look on those pigs faces is just heartbreaking why as a the human race do we do this :((

  • Sandra Reed commented on November 3, 2015 at 3:53 pm

    Absolutely heartbreaking. Why is this abhorrent treatment of animals allowed. People who abuse animals should be thrown in a dark hole that they can’t get out of. Give them an idea of what the pigs feel!!!!

  • Kate commented on November 3, 2015 at 5:41 pm

    I just cannot get my head round how human beings are still allowed to do this! Why why why is it not illegal? We are still in the gladiator age. I understand and get why people want to eat meat. I was myself until last April. But before the days of factory farming hundreds of years ago at least they grazed on grass and had some semblance of blissful ignorance without this disgusting legacy that will live on. People just don’t care as they don’t want to change their diet! But none would eat meat if they realised what is actually happening.

  • Linda Bache commented on November 3, 2015 at 6:32 pm

    Why are these conditions allowed – doesn’t anyone care any more? We should all boycott pork to show our distaste of the increasing cruelty towards these poor animals.

  • Caroline Sil commented on November 3, 2015 at 6:56 pm

    Please stop the cruelty to your pigs . Look after them clean water bedding outside space .They have the same intelligence as a three year old child would you treat your child like this and think it’s ok .

  • DJ Smith commented on November 3, 2015 at 7:42 pm

    This is reported as a ‘Red tractor’ approved farm! Red Tractor Approved is a joke, the farmer PAYS to be in this scheme, so it is in their interest to turn a blind eye, and we, the consumer pay more for this so called assurance of better standards. Red tractor approved should be awarded NOT bought. It’s a total scam. Complain to the Red tractor association….NOW!

  • marian edrupt commented on November 3, 2015 at 8:08 pm

    Please help to stop this inhuman torture of innocents

  • Lisa commented on November 3, 2015 at 8:38 pm

    I don’t eat meat, but always ensure I buy outdoor bred for my family! There should be more laws in place to protect our farm animals!

  • Florence Villenave commented on November 3, 2015 at 9:56 pm

    I am supporting your cause. Animals should not be treated like that. They should be treated with respect. People ignore the law of cause and effect and Karma.


  • Catherine commented on November 3, 2015 at 10:14 pm

    Totally devastating

  • Emma Jennings commented on November 3, 2015 at 10:22 pm

    How do we put a stop to this?? People won’t give up eating bacon, sausages etc. So what can you do? It is disgusting, despicable, barbaric and one of the cruelest things I’ve ever seen. Who can stop it and how?

  • Steven davis commented on November 3, 2015 at 11:29 pm


  • Sherry richardson commented on November 3, 2015 at 11:44 pm

    I am the worlds biggest animal lover and would like to work for pets or some organisation that does good by animals.

  • Debbie commented on November 3, 2015 at 11:47 pm

    Why do these animals need to suffered can they not live a normal life and have a humane way

  • Tracy Carson commented on November 4, 2015 at 12:04 am

    This crap had to stop…. So sad and cruel

  • Ekta bhatia commented on November 4, 2015 at 5:06 am

    Cruelty against animals should not be tolerated at all. We should work together for their better survival

  • raju gupta-chaudhary commented on November 4, 2015 at 7:12 am

    considering its a proven fact now it can cause to cancer. even if you dont care for the animals and are prepared to accept torture and death to get a bit of food and love eating dead flesh. common sense would tell you if you dont stop eating and get cancer then do not ask for help

  • Shelly commented on November 4, 2015 at 7:34 am

    People think that because and was don’t have a voice they don’t count . Animals are far more considerate than what humans will ever be . If that’s what you can call us after what I have just seen I think that we are the animals .

  • melanie beech commented on November 4, 2015 at 9:29 am

    Stop this its evil

  • Sylvia commented on November 4, 2015 at 2:59 pm

    This report is distressing beyond words!!! Where is this “factory” and who is responsible for this horrendous place??? Where is the RSPA? Why is it still operating???
    I believe an enormous amount of the blame lies with our huge and powerful supermarkets plus our ever-increasing demand for cheap and fast food.. Whilst I’m not against other people eating pork products, it is essential that any animal bound for the food chain has had a good, healthy life with a kind ending. At least buy from local farms where you can see where everything has come from.

  • joan dutton commented on November 4, 2015 at 6:24 pm

    animals were not put on this earth for mankind to eat,they have a right to live their life like humans do.what a world we all have created.

  • Kate commented on November 5, 2015 at 10:25 am


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