YP Letters: Factory farms lie at heart of drugs crisis

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From: Tracy Worcester, Director, Farms Not Factories.

THE Government has published another section of its Review on Antimicrobial Resistance which reported on the over-use of antibiotics in animal factories, grimly forecasting that the resulting antibiotic resistance will cause 10 million extra deaths a year by 2050.

In the UK approximately 25 per cent of all antibiotics are given to pigs in factory farms just to keep them alive in overcrowded, stressful and contagious conditions.

However, pigs on outdoor farms, or indoors with adequate space and bedding, are healthy and hardly ever need antibiotics. We have the choice to buy pork with the high welfare labels RSPCA Assured, Outdoor Bred, Free Range or Organic – these labels indicate that the animals have been treated properly and not irresponsibly stuffed with antibiotics to compensate for the appalling conditions in factory farms, here and abroad.

If everyone bought only high welfare pork, antibiotic use in the UK would drop by 25 per cent.

My campaigning organisation, Farms Not Factories, urges readers to eat a healthier, more ethical Christmas dinner this year by choosing higher welfare pork, and to pay for the extra cost by choosing less popular cuts, or eating less meat. This way, we can put an end to the intensive farming industry and eventually reduce antibiotic use on pigs to virtually zero.

Though the UK is one of the countries with the highest animal welfare standards for pigs, we import 60 per cent from intensive factory farming systems abroad that would be illegal in the UK, thereby undermining higher welfare UK pig farms.

It is time to take control of the way our food is produced, by only buying pork raised on humane farms, in supermarkets or better still, direct from our farmers via farmers’ markets, a box scheme, or online.

Why no trains on busy day?

From: Bob Watson, Springfield Road, Baildon.

WE will soon reach Boxing Day 2015 which, as ever, will be a very busy day for travelling. There will be sporting fixtures of every sort throughout the land, shops and shopping centres open everywhere, as well as people travelling to and fro for a variety of reasons.

And yet, once again, there will be no train services in our region despite the blindingly obvious need for trains on most lines. In the 21st century, this really is totally unacceptable.

With new franchises coming on stream, now is surely the time to stop this nonsense, and for the operating companies and Network Rail to get their act together to ensure that services operate on Boxing Day 2016 for the benefit of us all?

Second class post service

From: Don Walker, Skipton.

AS a retired post office counter clerk, I could not believe what I heard when visiting the Post Office in the Bingley area the other day. A rather frail old lady had just purchased some stamps and was struggling to put them on her envelopes.

She asked the lady behind the counter for help to stick them on.

Incredible the lady behind the counter said: “I am not allowed to help you stick the stamps on in case they come off and you blame me.”

What has happened to the Post Office’s customer service?

Sad memory of city’s Blitz

From: Jack Brown, Lamb Lane, Monk Bretton, Barnsley.

YOUR recent features on the bombing of Sheffield reminded me once more of Jack Aucock.

Jack, who was ex-RAF and landlord of the famous Barnsley Wine Shades, was resident pianist in the Marples during the Second World War. We became friends through our love of jazz and went to Sheffield City Hall concerts with our wives.

Jack left me an enduring memory of the Blitz which he recounted sorrowfully. On the night of the Marples conflagration he had a deputy because he was taking their “lass to the pictures”. The Marples had been levelled when they hurried back. He and other men tried to dig a tunnel from the Fitzalan Square underground urinals. They were driven back within yards by the glowing earth.

We really are doomed in EU

From: Barrie Crowther, Walton, Wakefield.

I HAVE just watched the preview of the Dad’s Army film We’re Doomed. The Churchillian spirit shown defending British borders and values contrasts vividly with David Cameron’s pathetic “significant progress“ and vague promises on our EU membership. Come on Dave, show some steel. We require a strong leader to defend our historic way of life before a ‘we’re doomed’ scenario kicks in.

Thanks for photograph

From: Eddie Peart, Rotherham.

CONGRATULATIONS to The Yorkshire Post for publishing a superb photograph on the front page (The Yorkshire Post, December 19) of the Kellingley miners on their last day of employment. A scoop that the national Press missed.