Third Dairy Farm in Okeechobee facing animal abuse accusations
McArthur Dairy Farm in Okeechobee is facing claims of animal abuse after ARM released undercover video. (Image provided by: ARM)
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4 photosOKEECHOBEE, Fla. (CBS12) —
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The animal rights group, Animal Recovery Mission released what it calls “shocking video” of animal abuse at a third dairy farm in Okeechobee County.
ARM says the video came from its own undercover investigation at the Mcarthur Dairy Farm.
The ARM investigator claims McArthur workers tormented dairy cows on a daily basis.
ARM said its video showed blow torches being used to sear the hairs off the udders of cows, and at their faces and bodies to get them to move.
The group says workers also chased down the cows with PVC piping and homemade shafts, which are tools that have knives attached to the end of PVC piping.
It its news release, ARM claimed Dean Foods "owned and controlled" McArthur Dairy Farm. CBS12 reached out to Dean Foods for comment.
In a statement, Dean Foods wrote:
A press release and video were issued today by an organization called Animal Recovery Mission (“ARM”) falsely stating that Dean Foods Company owns or controls McArthur Farms, a Florida dairy farm. We want to make it clear that Dean Foods does not own or control any dairy farms. While we proudly own the McArthur Dairy brand and dairy processing plant located in Miami, the “McArthur” name is totally coincidental. Dean Foods has no ownership interest and is in no way involved in the management of McArthur Farms.
The statement from Dean Foods went on to say the company "is appalled at the behaviors shown in the video released by ARM. We believe that providing for the health and welfare of dairy cows is the right thing to do, and we expect all farmers to ensure their animals are being cared for and handled according to sound animal welfare principles. We acknowledge that SMI is taking proactive steps with their members to address animal welfare on their farms."
Southeast Moilk said it did not have a statement at this time but will follow up as soon as possible.
Michele Bell, a spokesperson for the Okeechobee County Sheriff's Office, told CBS12 the sheriff does not have a statement at this time.
McArthur Dairy Farm is the third Okeechobee County dairy farm to face accusations of animal cruelty.
Just last month, ARM released undercover video showing what it claims is animal abuse at the Larson Dairy Farm and Burnham Farms, also in Okeechobee County. In the Larson Dairy Farm case, the Okeechobee County Sheriff’s Office arrested one person and is looking for three more in that case.
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