When cruelty costs money why wouldn’t you stop?

When cruelty costs money why wouldn’t you stop?

Some farmers have absolutely no interest in animal welfare but wouldn’t you think they’d be interested in saving thousands of dollars a year?

I recently interviewed Don Mudford of Parkdale Merino Stud, who breeds ‘bare breached’ sheep that don’t need to be mulesed. This is a horribly cruel practice of cutting off skin under the tail which theoretically prevents fly strike, but even mulesed sheep need to be treated with insecticide. 15 years ago, when he was still mulesing sheep himself, Don was spending $30,000 a year on chemicals. Today, he spends just $3,000 despite the fact that his flock has doubled in size.

The quality of the wool hasn’t suffered – in fact, Don says it’s a finer, better-quality fibre.  Yet, despite the impressive economic benefits with what appears to be no downside, many Australian sheep farmers are making no attempt to change their old ways.

I just don’t understand it.