Animal rights organisation People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals has again targeted Nintendo.
This time the body is calling out 1-2 Switch in an effort to highlight the treatment of cows in the dairy industry.
You've taken all the cruelty out of milking,” a PETA letter said, referencing the cow milking mini-game included in the Switch launch title. We have more than 35 years of experience investigating dairy farms where cows are exploited for their milk and it is NEVER that pleasant for these animals. Can we have some realism here, please?
To simulate cow milking accurately, 1-2 Switch would need to show all aspects of dairy farming, including the violent insemination of female cows on what the dairy industry itself refers to as a ‘rape rack'. Cows produce milk to feed their babies, but their young are torn away from them soon after birth so that human beings can use their milk instead. A mother cow will bellow for her calf for days after the baby is taken from her.
Perhaps you could add these sounds to your game in order to remind players that by drinking milk, people support an industry that separates mothers from their babies.
If you think that the gruesome nature of this would be too upsetting, we suggest that instead of sugarcoating the subject, Nintendo switch to simulating activities in which no animals suffer. (For example, an almond milk minigame in which you pick almonds could be quite fun.) Is your team brave enough to face the truth?”
PETA has a history of using video game hype to spread awareness for the causes it fights for. Nintendo was previously targeted with a campaign that used Pokemon to promote vegetarianism, while Ubisoft was slammed for its depiction of whaling in Assassin's Creed IV.
Nintendo has been targeted by other organisations too. In 2013 Walk Free demanded assurances that slave mined minerals weren't being used in the production of its hardware.