Babe out of the woods

Babe out of the woods

June 22, 2001 The San Francisco Chronicle by Leah Garchik

St. Helena filmmaker Bonnie Durrance, who's working on "Nobody Talks About It," a documentary about the emotional and spiritual cost of Britain's anti-foot-and-mouth animal "culling" (the killing of livestock), came across the dramatic story of an embattled movie star:

Grunty, the pig who played "Babe" and also starred in "Pig at the Ritz" was spared from the executioner this week, when a British High Court judge ruled against government authorities who had sentenced the pig to death in fear of foot-and-mouth disease. The battle to save Grunty's life had been waged by lawyers for Rosemary Upton, proprietor of Hill Farm in Stawley, England, where Grunty lives.

The pig and 11 sheep had been condemned, reports the British press service Ananova, because Upton had visited another of her properties that was later found to have been infected. She said she wore boots and followed disinfecting procedures. The court agreed with her that monitoring and testing are preferable to outright condemnation, noting that Grunty showed no sign of the disease.

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