The Humane Society allege that JBS and its subsidiary, Pilgrim’s Pride, have been misleading investors about their animal welfare practices and their environmental impact.

A significant complaint has been filed by the Humane Society with the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) against JBS, the world’s largest meat and poultry company, and its subsidiary, Pilgrim’s Pride.

This complaint, backed by the Center for Biological Diversity and the Farmed Animal Advocacy Clinic at Vermont Law and Graduate School, alleges that these companies have been misleading investors about their animal welfare practices and their environmental impact.

JBS is a major global supplier of beef, pork, and poultry products, largely sourced from animals subjected to severe factory farming conditions. Recently, JBS announced plans to list on the New York Stock Exchange, a move aimed at raising capital from U.S. investors to further expand its controversial farming practices. To proceed with this public offering, JBS must provide comprehensive and accurate disclosures to the SEC.

The complaint claims that JBS and Pilgrim’s Pride have consistently provided false and misleading information about their animal welfare standards and environmental practices. Despite portraying themselves as responsible companies, both firms allegedly source animals from farms where extreme confinement and cruel treatment are common. Furthermore, they have a history of violating federal slaughter laws, failing to meet even basic humane treatment standards. An undercover investigation by Mercy For Animals revealed severe cruelty at Pilgrim’s facilities, including workers physically abusing birds.

In 2018, concerns about misleading marketing claims by Pilgrim’s Pride led to an investigation request to the Federal Trade Commission. Although some marketing claims were subsequently adjusted, the companies continue to face scrutiny over their sustainability assertions.

JBS has promoted a goal of achieving “net zero” emissions by 2040, a claim rejected by the Better Business Bureau and challenged in a lawsuit by the New York attorney general. The meat production process, involving significant greenhouse gas emissions from animal digestion, waste, and operational activities, inherently impacts the climate. A study cited by The New York Times highlighted that JBS’s annual emissions exceed those of Italy. Additionally, the complaint argues that JBS has not adequately disclosed its ability to comply with new EU legislation against deforestation-related products, including meat.

Support for this complaint extends beyond these organizations. A bipartisan group of 15 U.S. senators has expressed concerns about JBS’s public offering, citing the company’s involvement in bribery schemes and its history of misleading investors about environmental and other risks. Supermarket chains have already started to distance themselves from JBS products due to deforestation links.

This complaint coincides with ongoing efforts to defend Proposition 12, America’s strictest farm animal welfare law, against legislative challenges that favour large conglomerates over local producers willing to meet these standards.

Original source: https://www.onegreenplanet.org

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