ENVIRONMENT
09/18/2014 04:52 pm ET

New Mexico Dairy Farm Fires All Its Workers After Cow Abuse Is Caught On Tape

Hidden camera footage released by the animal advocacy group Mercy For Animals appears to show dairy employees beating and abusing cows at Winchester Dairy in New Mexico.

The dairy is a supplier for Leprino Foods, the self-proclaimed "world's largest mozzarella cheese producer." Leprino's cheese shows up in many products across the United States. Mercy For Animals targeted Leprino customers Domino’s, Pizza Hut and Papa John’s on a new website called "Slice of Cruelty".

Leprino said Wednesday that they had stopped all shipments from the dairy farm in question, and that "Leprino Foods cares deeply about the health and welfare of the animals on the farms that supply our milk." After the video was released, the New Mexico Livestock Board launched an investigation into the abuse allegations at the farm.

The dairy has since fired all employees and referred the offenders in the video to law enforcement, according the the Associated Press. They have also stopped dairy shipments and milking operations and sent cows to other area farms.

A Domino’s spokesman said that this was not an issue with the cheese supplier. Instead, it was an "isolated case of sadistic acts by employees at a single dairy farm in southern New Mexico," Tim McIntyre said in a statement emailed to several news outlets. Leprino foods echoed this sentiment, saying in a statement, "This isolated incident does not reflect the daily care and comfort that New Mexico dairy farmers provide their cows."

Unfortunately, this is not the first time Mercy For Animals has uncovered abuse on animal farms. Their website lists other examples of abuse caught on tape, including five incidents from 2014. During a 2010 investigation of an Ohio dairy farm, MFA filmed abuse that led one worker to be sentenced to 8 months in jail.

Warning: the video below contains disturbing content.

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