The inhalation of pigs’ brains may cause illness. Who knew?

December 8, 2007 at 7:44 am (frightening things) (, , , , )


On the slaughterhouse floor at Quality Pork Processors Inc. is an area known as the “head table,” but not because it is the place of honor. It is where workers cut up pigs’ heads and then shoot compressed air into the skulls until the brains come spilling out. But now the grisly practice has come under suspicion from health authorities.

Over eight months from last December through July, 11 workers at the plant in Austin, Minn. — all of them employed at the head table — developed numbness, tingling or other neurological symptoms, and some scientists suspect inhaled airborne brain matter may have somehow triggered the illnesses.

Via Boing Boing.



  1. fitnessfortheoccasion said,

    Grah. At first the thought of pig’s brains causing illness just triggered a gross out reflex. But thinking about it, this is probably far more disturbing. Pigs are so close to humans physically, and what is probably happening is some kind of neurological toxin or disease is being passed from pig to human.

  2. Emily said,

    Yeah, so disturbing that I had nothing to say but “yikes.”

  3. Emily said,

    Which really doesn’t do justice to the horror.

  4. Daisy said,

    Speaking of the similarity between pigs and humans…

    Could this be at all like that fabled (possibly mythological?) disease that happens when a person eats human brain?

  5. fitnessfortheoccasion said,

    All signs point to “pig zombie apocalypse”.

  6. Daisy said,


  7. Elaine Vigneault said,

    If slaughterhouses had windows we’d all be vegetarian.

  8. Daisy said,

    Ain’t that the truth.

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