Where are Florida’s monkey farms shipping monkeys?
Florida is home to three companies that provide monkeys to laboratories for use in research and testing: Primate Products, Worldwide Primates, and The Mannheimer Foundation (a fourth company, PreLabs, is constructing a new facility near Lehigh Acres).
In response to a public records request, ARFF has received copies of paperwork filed by Primate Products and The Mannheimer Foundation with the State of Florida detailing shipments of monkeys since January 1. ARFF is looking into why Worldwide Primates did not file the required certificates of veterinary inspection with the Florida Department of Agriculture.
Between January 1 and December 9, 2014, Primate Products shipped 1,245 monkeys to contract research organizations, universities and government labs. Click here to download a summary of the shipments. Compared to previous years*, Primate Product’s customer list has shrunk. Two customers– Charles River and SNBL— made up 80% of Primate Products’ business.
In May, Primate Products shipped 20 monkeys to Central State Primates, a site operated by PreLabs in Missouri. Two months after the animals arrived, a USDA inspector found unsanitary conditions and a female monkey with “excessive hair loss.” The inspector noted, “hair loss can be a sign that the animal is in psychological distress.” The facility was ordered to improve environmental enrichment for its caged monkeys. (Similar problems were identified during an inspection at Central State Primates in August 2013.)
This year The Mannheimer Foundation shipped a smaller number of monkeys (211) out of Florida. Its main customer was Merck Research Laboratories. Click here to download a summary of The Mannheimer Foundation’s shipments.
*ARFF released similar sets of records in August 2013, July 2012 and in November 2011.