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FOWL PLAY: ‘Wet markets’ with chickens stuffed in cages still open in New York City despite protests


Blood and innards can be seen splattered all over spaces at wet markets in Queens and Bronx, where carcasses of chicken and cattle hang from hooks or are piled in shopping carts.

ERIN VAN DER MEER: ‘Wet markets’ are still operating in New York City amid the coronavirus outbreak… Wet markets traditionally sell live animals, such as fish and exotic animals, which are butchered in the open air… Video filmed this month at facilities in Queens and the Bronx – deemed essential businesses during the shutdown – show filthy spaces where workers slaughter live animals and sell their meat. Blood and innards can be seen splattered all over the spaces, where carcasses of chicken and cattle hang from hooks or are piled in shopping carts.

At one facility, a dump truck arrived to collect buckets of red and brown muck. Some chickens resorted to cannibalism, feasting on one of their own who had died in a cramped cage… The NYC wet markets pictured are in busy, densely populated parts of Queens and the Bronx, and there are many in Brooklyn and Manhattan as well, said Edita Birnkrant from NYCLASS, the animal rights group that filmed the videos. “There is blood, guts and faeces all over the ground,” said Birnkrant, who has witnessed unsanitary conditions at several of NYC’s more than 80 wet markets…

There are more than 80 wet market facilities in New York City, according to the New York State Department of Agriculture and Markets. A spokesperson from the NYS Department of Agriculture and Markets told The Sun there are 71 licensed bird markets in New York, and as part of the food supply, they are not restricted from operating during the pandemic… Wet markets do not fall under the jurisdiction of the New York City Health Department.

New York State Assemblymember Linda B. Rosenthal is drafting legislation arguing these facilities should not operate as slaughter markets. “COVID-19 and other deadly zoonotic diseases before it, like H1NI and SARs before it, have their origins in live markets,” Rosenthal told The Sun. “COVID-19 has devastated New York. We have a responsibility to do everything that we can to prevent the next pandemic. Closing the live markets will save lives, and my bill will do just that”…

The coronavirus is believed to have emerged from such a market in the city of Wuhan, China late last year… In an interview with the BBC, Dr David Nabarro, a World Heatlh Organization (WHO) special envoy on Covid-19, said its advice is to actually shut wet markets. Although the group does not “have the capacity to police the world” and can only “offer advice and guidance, there’s very clear advice from the Food and Agriculture Organisation and WHO.  SOURCE…


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