Poultry farmer on the board of Dier&Recht – ‘People need to know how animals are kept’

Dier&Recht sees livestock farming as the exploitation of animals and campaigns against drinking milk, among other things. The action group was founded by Hans Baaij van Varkens in Nood, among others.

Wegloop itself also acknowledges that it is a special and sensitive construction. Because there is a tension. “I am not against animal husbandry or against the use of animal products. I am also not a vegan. But the livestock farming systems as they exist today are not sustainable indefinitely and must be different and better. That was also my motivation to participate in Kipster.”

Animals are living beings, with instincts, feelings and desires. The system is set up in such a way that there is insufficient space to provide this

That was in 2013. Last year, Wegloop was asked by Hans Baaij of Dier&Recht to take a seat on the board. Runaway doesn’t see that as incompatible. “They asked me at Dier&Recht if I could live with the attitude and actions of the organization. I said yes, but asked in return whether they could live with a poultry farmer in their midst.”

Lack of knowledge
Wegloop’s vision on animal husbandry also makes it possible for him to participate in a dairy or pig farm, he says. The condition is that the animals are kept in a natural way, with calves, for example, that stay with the cow. Or pigs that are kept in a natural way, as veterinarian and livestock farmer Kees Schepens does.

It is a pity that dairy farmers think that Dier&Recht dismisses them as animal abusers, because they don’t say that

What particularly bothers Wegloop in animal husbandry are the circumstances of the animals, which often leave something to be desired, and the lack of knowledge of those circumstances among consumers. “Animals are living beings, with instincts, feelings and desires. The system is designed in such a way that there is insufficient space to provide for this. This is certainly not due to the farmer, but to an excessive system that also hinders the farmer. .”

Daily practice
To contribute to the legal position of animals, he joined the board of Dier&Recht. “I understand that farmers feel offended by the campaign against drinking milk. Yet it is important that people know how animals are kept and what the daily practice is. We should not hide that. It is also the reason that we at Kipster make films about it, sometimes resulting in fierce reactions, for example when it comes to killing our chickens and roosters. Dier&Recht because of the system that has to be changed. Dier&Recht does want to campaign against this in a decent way. Not with hard actions. Then I wouldn’t have participated.”

An action poster stating that dairy causes serious animal suffering was banned. The above poster is still allowed.

‘Chicken Man’ Zanders

The use of Wegloop at Dier&Recht is known to Ruud Zanders, Kipster’s ‘chicken man’ and most important manager of the company. He wants to feed the chickens in the Kipster formula exclusively with selected residual flows and thinks that this will enable him to achieve a 50% lower CO2 footprint than competing systems. Zanders says that this is based on scientific research by Imke de Boer from Wageningen.

Zanders has no problem with the dual function of his colleague, he says. “In the end, the question is also whether you should want something with animals.” Although Zanders is walking around with this question, he does not intend to stick to 2 Kipster locations. “Certainly not.”

This article is part of the content collaboration between Foodlog, Foodbusiness and Boerenbusiness.