Police in China say they have rescued more than 1,000 cats about to be slaughtered and sold as pork in the city of Zhangjiagang. The entire clowder was packed into a single truck, according to reports, and authorities were tipped off by animal rights activists.
Cat meat can fetch 4.5 yuan ($0.61; £0.51) per catty, a unit of measure in China that is roughly equivalent to 600g, activists said. One cat can yield four to five catties.
It was unclear if the rescued cats were strays or pets. They were in transit to the country's south where they were to be served up as pork and lamb skewers and sausages.
A what now? Catty [wikipedia]
There's evidently a general food provenance problem in China, a soupçon of dismay in the soup of a recently-developed nation.
"May these people die a horrible death," said one Weibo user. Another said: "When will there be laws to protect animals? Don't the lives of cats and dogs matter?" One user said: "I won't be eating barbeque meat outside anymore."
In June, uproar resulted at a college in the province of Jiangsu, when a student discovered a rat's head in his meal. School authorities initially tried to claim that it was duck meat before admitting that the student was right.