Exposed: Calves Burned, Cows Kicked on Publicly Funded Farm in Japan

Exposed: Calves Burned, Cows Kicked on Publicly Funded Farm in Japan

Tokyo – New footage just obtained by PETA Asia reveals workers inside Japan’s publicly funded Ibaraki Prefectural Livestock Research Centre twisting burning-hot irons into calves’ heads without pain relief, kicking and slapping cows, and jabbing animals with metal tools. The facility – which conducts farm-related research and raises cows for dairy and Wagyu beef – spent over 900 million yen (about £5 million) of taxpayer money and public funding in a year, according to the most recent data.

In response, PETA Asia sent a complaint to the Ministry of Agriculture, Forestry and Fisheries, requesting that it cut off funding and that the Ibaraki Prefecture audit the use of public funds for cruelty to animals.

Recorded over three months in 2022, the footage offers a never-before-seen look into Japanese dairy and Wagyu:

  • Workers plunged a smoking-hot iron into calves’ heads to remove horn tissue as they cried out, their eyes wide open in apparent terror. They appeared to defecate. Multiple men sat on top of the suffering animals, who struggled under the weight of workers crushing their necks and faces.
  • Workers punched cows on their torsos, kicked them and slapped them on the head, and stamped on their legs and backs.
  • Workers hit cows with wooden sticks on their sensitive udders and faces in an apparent attempt to make them move.
  • Cows were forced to live in their own waste in paddocks during the day.
  • Cows languished in the scorching heat, reaching 40 degrees, without access to shade.

“This facility is snatching up public funds and using them to beat cows and burn calves for dairy and Wagyu,” says PETA Asia Senior Vice President Jason Baker. “PETA Asia is calling on the Ministry of Agriculture, Forestry and Fisheries to stop propping up this abusive facility with taxpayer money.”

The group notes that Article 2 of the Japanese Act on Welfare and Management of Animals states that “no person shall destroy, injure, or inflict cruelty on animals without reason”. In addition, Article 7 states that the owner or possessor of an animal shall “endeavor to care [for them]” properly and Article 3 mandates that the government shall “endeavor to achieve dissemination and awareness raising with regard to the welfare and proper care of animals”. Nevertheless, the facility clearly violates Article 44, Paragraph 1 (“Crime of Injury to Animals”) or Article 44, Paragraph 2 (“Crime of Cruelty to Animals”).

Broadcast-quality footage is available upon request.

PETA – whose motto reads, in part, that “animals are not ours to eat” – opposes speciesism, a human-supremacist worldview. For more information, please visit or follow the group on Facebook, Twitter, TikTok, or Instagram.


Jennifer White +44 (0) 20 7837 6327; [email protected]