20. March 2015

Uruguay | Montevideo | Interview with Dr. Cabanas | Blood farms for hormone production

[Translate to English:] Interview mit Dr. Homero Cabanas, Präsident der nationalen Tierschutzkommission.

We want to ask a government official who is responsible for the control of the blood business and arrange a meeting with Dr. Homero Cabanas, President of the national Animal Welfare Committee. We would like to know how many companies are involved in the blood business, who is inspecting them and where the blood serum is exported to.

Dr. Cabanas confirms that the blood business has economic importance and that the blood serum is extracted for European pharmaceutical companies. He does not know who is making the profit. The inspections should be carried out by the Ministry for Livestock, Agriculture and Fisheries, as the blood products are all exported. However, there is no legal basis for an inspection and the blood producers take advantage of this grey area within the law. Uruguay is of interest for the importing countries because there are no laws or official controls. 

We ask Dr. Cabanas, as a veterinarian, what consequences a frequent blood extraction could have for the mares. He says that they gradually become anaemic, suffer from stress, their immune system is weakened and the number of miscarriages increases. The blood extraction continues until the mares do not get pregnant anymore, they are then sent to the slaughterhouse.