End feedlots

For the sake of animals and our environment

End feedlots

In New Zealand, we love animals and we value our natural environment.

Most Kiwis imagine the cattle raised for beef grazing on lush, green pastures, but sadly this isn’t the reality in New Zealand. Tucked away out of sight cattle are kept in barren, grassless pens known as feedlots.


Shocking footage obtained by a Farmwatch drone shows us the dirty secret the New Zealand beef industry wants to keep hidden.

Unnatural for cattle

Feedlots are used to fatten cattle raised for beef before they are sent for slaughter. Cattle raised on pasture are sent to feedlots to spend the last few months of their lives.

Once in a feedlot, the cattle are unable to graze and instead are fed a diet of grains.

Welfare concerns

The unnatural diet of grains is no substitute for the fresh grass the cattle were used to and they can suffer from bloating, diarrhoea and digestive discomfort.

The crowded, barren pens provide no shelter, and cattle are left exposed to New Zealand’s harsh weather. This is a breach of the Animal Welfare Act 1999, which states that animals should have adequate shelter.

Environmental concerns

The increasing number of feedlots in New Zealand is having devastating effects on our once pristine environment. Fertile land that could be used for crops is being turned into barren wastelands, and there are concerns from freshwater ecologists about the contamination of freshwater close to feedlots.

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As a charity, SAFE is reliant on the support of caring people like you to carry out our valuable work. Every gift goes towards providing education, undertaking research and campaigning for the benefit of all animals. SAFE is a registered charity in New Zealand (CC 40428). Contributions of $5 or more are tax-deductible.