Gas Chambers

We hid inside one of the pork industry’s gas chambers with a camera.
Now you can watch what they label as 'humane'.

New footage, aired exclusively on ABC's 7.30, reveals the agonising final moments of pigs inside Victoria's three largest slaughterhouses.

The Campaign So Far

  • March 27th 2023:  Launched our campaign with an exclusive report on ABC’s 7.30. Animal Justice Party MP Georgie Purcell calls for a ban on gas chambers in Victoria and a state inquiry into pig welfare.
  • April 1st - April 7th 2023: Organised a ‘week of action’ where we put pressure on the Australian pork industry, government and facilities to stop gassing pigs for pork.
  • April 7th 2023: Organised Melbourne’s ‘Dominion Animal Rights March,’ bringing together hundreds of animal rights activists to take over Melbourne CBD and demand kindness and respect for all animals.
  • April 13th 2023: 25 activists shut down Benalla slaughterhouse for over 10 hours to demand a ban on gas chambers.
  • April 26th 2023: WIN - Australian Food Group Slaughterhouse shuts down as a result of our footage
  • May 2023: The Victorian Greens come out in support of a ban on gas chambers
  • May 2023: Animal Justice Party MP Emma Hurst introduces state legislation to ban gas chambers in NSW
  • May 16th & April 17th 2023: Actions at the Department of Agriculture and Australian Pork Limited lead to a meeting being arranged with two senior staff members at the Federal Department
  • May 25th 2023: WIN - Victorian Parliamentary Inquiry into Pig Welfare announced


Stop Gassing Pigs for Pork

All major pig slaughterhouses in Australia now use carbon dioxide gas chambers as a means of rendering pigs unconscious before cutting their throats. Referred to by the industry as "controlled atmosphere stunning" or "controlled atmosphere killing", the process involves forcing pigs into gondola cages which are then lowered into the pit of the chamber, where high concentrations of the excruciating toxic gas cause them to suffocate.

When we first exposed the use of these chambers at Australia's largest pig slaughterhouse back in 2014, it was the first time in the world that the supposedly "humane" system had been captured on camera. Consumers were being told that the pigs just gently fall asleep - but the footage revealed something very different. In the 9 years since, despite the emergence of even more footage and the obvious extreme cruelty, it's managed to remain the pork industry's best-kept secret.

We knew we needed to take drastic measures to force the issue into mainstream attention and prevent it being swept under the rug once more. So this time, we hid an investigator inside the top of one of these chambers overnight with a professional camera, to capture the brutality like never before.

On January 27, 2023, Farm Transparency Project's founding director, Chris Delforce, spent over 9 hours hidden above the gas chamber at the Australian Food Group (AFG) slaughterhouse in Melbourne's west, witnessing first-hand the absolute horror faced by millions of pigs every year in Australia. After the day's killing had finished and the staff went on break, investigators Harley and Cat guided Chris with an aerial drone as he climbed out of the chamber and snuck out of the facility wearing high-vis clothing.

Investigator filming from above the gas chamber

Meanwhile, the team planted high-resolution hidden cameras inside the chambers at Victoria's two other largest slaughterhouses - Diamond Valley Pork, just down the road from AFG in Laverton, and Benalla in the state's north. Diamond Valley Pork kills up to 1 million pigs per year, around 20% of the national total, having upgraded a few years earlier to an enormous "Butina Backloader" chamber capable of fitting up to three times as many pigs per gondola compared to the previous design.

When returning to retrieve the hidden cameras at Benalla, the gondolas had rotated to lower positions in the chamber, requiring our team to climb down into the gas. Immediately, we felt our eyes burning, and panic set in. Any breath we tried to take was like breathing in fire, and several times we had to frantically climb back out, shaking and gasping for air.

“I have seen animals killed right in front of my eyes. I have seen workers kicking piglets around like footballs and animals screaming in pain, pleading with their eyes for help. I have had to walk away from so many suffering animals, knowing that the best thing I can do for them and all the others I couldn’t save was to keep trying to tell their story... but this is the most horrible thing I have ever seen.” - Chris Delforce

Our footage shows that, despite what the pork industry tells consumers, pigs suffer and die in agony inside these gas chambers. We saw pigs writhing and gasping for air, screaming in fear and pain, frantically looking around for a way out of the cage. At AFG, many pigs locked eyes with Chris as he sat hidden just metres above them, and he had to watch as they slowly suffocated, knowing that the best way he could help them was to get out safely and make sure their stories reached as many people as possible.

Workers are seeing using paddles, prodders and even boots to force pigs into the chamber, sometimes over the bodies of other pigs who had become stuck as they thrashed around desperately. Over a few harrowing minutes, pigs go from being curious, scared, thinking, feeling individuals with a desire to live, to being nothing more than a body, a number, a price tag. 

These are not isolated incidents, these are not "rogue operators". This is the pork industry's highest standard. If these were dogs or cats, it would be illegal - but pigs and other farmed animals are exempt from protection in Victoria and other states' animal welfare laws.

It's time for that to change.

You can learn more about the reality of Australian pig farming via our online knowledgebase.

Take Action

Industries that cage, mutilate and slaughter animals can never be humane. They can never be kind or compassionate. It’s time that we call them out on the lies they tell us and make all animal cruelty illegal. 

What we want

  • A Victorian inquiry into the use of gas chambers, or ‘controlled atmosphere stunning,’ in slaughterhouses - ACHIEVED
  • A federal inquiry into pig slaughter methods in Australia
  • The immediate closure of the slaughterhouses exposed in our footage while an inquiry takes place
    • Australian Food Group - SHUT DOWN
    • Diamond Valley Pork - under investigation
    • Benalla - under investigation
  • A total ban on the use of gas chambers and other industry practices that would be considered animal abuse if farmed animals weren’t exempt from animal welfare legislation

We also want to see:

  • An end to the breeding and killing of pigs for food
  • Government support for farmers and slaughterhouse workers to transition out of the pig slaughter industry and into kinder, sustainable industries


What you can do

  • Write to the minister - Contact the Federal Minister for Agriculture, Murray Watt, asking him to support a federal Parliamentary Inquiry into gas chambers, and ultimately, a ban on the cruel practice. You can use our template email form below, or email him at [email protected], or call (02) 6277 7190. Further contact details are available at
  • Write to your local MP - Connect with your local MP to ask whether they will support a ban on gas chambers - we've created a template letter you can use.
    Consider also calling the MPs and even visiting their electoral offices and asking for a meeting. You can view or download the contact details for MPs here:
  • Get involved - Attend our events, share our content and take a stand for all animals. Follow us on Facebook to see our latest events.
  • Stop eating pigs - Every time we choose slaughter-free options, we are choosing to live in line with our values of kindness and compassion.
  • Plan your own events - We encourage people to plan their own events as part of the Ban Gas Chambers campaign. Email [email protected] for support with visuals, promotion and action design. Consider outreach events, rallies with placards and banners, and peaceful vigils.
  • Truck drivers, refuse delivery of pigs to gas chambers - We encourage truck drivers to refuse to deliver pigs to gas chambers. In Victoria, pigs will be gassed to death at C A Sinclair abattoir in Benalla and Diamond Valley Pork abattoir in Laverton. Consider refusing these jobs on moral grounds. If you are not in a safe position to do so and worry about losing work, consider raising a complaint with your union, manager or company.
    If you want support in this, please email us at [email protected] with the subject line ‘truck drivers against gas chambers.’
Tell the Federal Minister for Agriculture to ban gas chambers in pig slaughterhouses

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