A Chinese theme park came under fire recently after forcing a 165-pound pig to bungee jump before being slaughtered on Saturday.
Video footage of the disturbing incident at Mexin Red Wine Town theme park was shared widely across Weibo on Sunday, a Chinese website similar to Twitter. There was much outrage.
In the video, the massive pig, tied to a pole, is carried up the stairs by two unidentified men. It was then attached to the bungee cord and pushed from the top.
Loud squealing from the pig can be heard, as well as laughter in the background, as the animal careens down and bounces back up multiple times.
The event was called the “golden pig bungee jump,” BBC says, and was held to launch the park’s new attraction that day.
According to the publication, the park, located in the Chongqing municipality, released an apologetic statement shortly after receiving heavy criticism from Weibo users.
“We sincerely accept netizens’ criticism and advice and apologize to the public,” it said. “We will improve marketing of the tourist site, to provide tourists with better services.”
However, an unnamed park spokesperson defended the event as “just a bit of entertainment,” according to the South China Morning Post.
According to a state-run Chinese media source [Warning: link contains graphic video. Viewer discretion is advised], an anonymous cameraman working for the park said, “A pig bungee jumping is odd and attracts tourists and local residents to our site.”
The employee added that the pig was “calm” when it was being brought back up to the platform after its fall. It was then taken to slaughter, local media outlets report.
The South China publication cites a report done by Chinese media outlet Thecover.cn, which spoke to the park’s unnamed owner. Apparently, the event was a prayer of sorts to help drop pork prices.
“It’s our opening day today,” they said. “We let the pig make the first jump because pork prices have been very high this year and recently they dropped a bit.”
Awareness of animal rights has been on the rise in the country in recent years.
In 2016, the South China Morning Post reported that China is the only major industrialized nation without legislation against animal abuse.
A protest that year was held by members of Freedom for Animal Actors (FAA) outside of the Beijing Workers’ Stadium.
Animal cruelty, however, is still not punishable by law in China.
© 2020 Global News, a division of Corus Entertainment Inc.