U.S.-based Fair Oaks Farms dairy is under fire this week after an animal rights group circulated a video showing abuse of dairy calves at the dairy. Fair Oaks is a supplier of Coca-Cola’s Fairlife milk brand.
Owner Dr. Mike McCloskey posted a video statement on the company’s web page. In it, McCloskey apologizes for the breakdown in animal welfare that occurred on the farm and outlines what the company is doing and will do to ensure it never happens again.
McCloskey says that of the four people in the video, three have already been reported for animal rights violations and have been fired — three months ago. The fourth was fired this week following the video release.
Fair Oaks has an employee training regime for animal welfare that was followed for each of these employees, McCloskey says, including training and the responsibility to report other’s inappropriate behaviour.
Effective immediately, McCloskey says that cameras will be installed in all areas with animal/human interactions. A popular agri-tourism site, Fair Oaks, is also creating an exhibit on animal welfare with full access to the video streams. The exhibit will be hosted by a trained staff member to answer any questions people have. The company has also contracted an animal welfare organization to launch frequent, unannounced audits of the farm. He expects them as frequently as every two to four weeks. The farm also commits to hiring a full-time animal welfare specialist for continuous learning and education for staff.
McCloskey adds that he is working with the county attorney and commits that these individuals will be prosecuted.
Some retail outlets announced they would pull Coca-Cola’s Fairlife low-sugar, high-protein milk following the video’s release.
View McCloskey’s full statement, below: