Statement From Primera on
the 3,200 Monkey Center
From: Primera Management
To: Hendry County Board of Commissioners & Residents
Re: Response to the Recent Media Coverage & Animal Rights Activities
Primera is committed to improving the quality of human and animal life. Our focus is aligned with the principles of the 3R’s (Replacement, Reduction and Refinement) in our unwavering commitment to refining the nonhuman primate research model and reducing the number of animals used in biomedical research.
Hendry County, FL is ideally situated in a subtropical climate which is conducive to agricultural operations & animal welfare, ground/air transportation accessibility and the local community’s appreciation for animals and their use. We stand by our commitment to create jobs and use the local community’s offerings to promote economic development.
Primera has assembled a team of industry experts, including nonhuman primate veterinarians, geneticists, animal welfare and breeding/housing specialists, who have taken into consideration the variables (whether by acts of nature or human error) and consequently designed a state-of-the-art facility with rigorous processes to prevent these occurrences.
Primera has fulfilled all the necessary environmental impact and survey requirements to obtain permitting. The waste management and water supply systems have been reviewed and permitted by the appropriate regulatory agencies.
The distorted and unsubstantiated media coverage by HLN’s Jane Velez-Mitchell, is sensationalist journalism designed to misguide viewers and convey an agenda-driven story. It is propaganda which is based on various unfounded statements, unrelated background, and false accusations. For example, Primera will not be importing 3,200 nonhuman primates from Biodia, as repeatedly claimed by the media.
The concerns about the origin of primates from the island of Mauritius also brought forth the erroneous topic of the potential of the ebola virus being imported into Hendry County. This concern is unfounded as the ebola virus being discussed is not found in Mauritius, but rather thousands of ocean miles away in central regions of Africa. The United States Fish and Wildlife and Center for Disease Control (CDC) enforce strict regulations on the importation of nonhuman primates and require the quarantine of such imports. Importers must satisfy rigorous federal testing and oversight requirements which have long been established. The USDA Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service (APHIS) also enforces strict regulations and oversight governing the care and welfare of these nonhuman primates, as established by the federal Animal Welfare Act. These governmental agencies regularly audit the facilities as per their respective protocols.
The video footage of primates shown in HLN’s media coverage was assembled using multiple clips of film taken at numerous international facilities at different periods of time. The guests featured are funded by and supporters of organizations against animals being used in biomedical research, such as Jan Creamer, President of Animal Defenders International (ADI), Wayne Pacelle, President & CEO of the Humane Society of the United States and Neal Barnard, Founder and President of Physicians Committee for Responsible Medicine, who has been heavily funded by People for Ethical Treatment of Animals (PETA). Reference the below link which provides additional information on Neal Barnard: http://www.consumerfreedom.com/2007/01/188-consumer-group-calls-on-vegan-diet-doctor-neal-barnard-to-come-clean-about-his-animal-rights-agenda
The unbalanced and shock-value style of reporting portrayed in the media by various animal rights extremists reflects a prejudicial and biased image of Primera.
We want to assure Hendry County residents that Primera is in full compliance with rules, guidelines and laws at the local, state and federal levels. Primera is committed to meeting the highest standards with the utmost respect for the safety and preservation of the surrounding environment. We welcome the opportunity to discuss any relevant issues with the appropriate local, state and federal officials.