Taipei Thing #3: More about those pigs (vegetarians, beware)

27 May

A closer look.

My dog went a bit crazy this evening when I got home. He could smell the pig blood on my shoes.

After noticing the pig truck for the first time on Saturday, I happened to be passing the same place at the same hour tonight. This time, after watching a bit from afar, I decided to ask the workers if they’d mind my taking some photos. Not only did they not mind, they also invited me into the truck for a better look. As you can see above, the view from the inside is quite different. A few more:

I was surprisingly not disgusted by this.

More pieces.


I expect some people will be rather disgusted by these photos, and if that’s the case for you, I’d advise you not to watch the video below.

As for me, I was fascinated rather than disgusted. After all, if I can’t stomach seeing where the pork I eat comes from, I probably shouldn’t be eating pork in the first place. The only thing that was slightly gross was standing to the side in the truck as they carried off two pigs, and seeing what was presumably fat slide down one of the carcasses as it passed no more than a foot away from me. Of course, that may have been more terror than disgust – terror at the possibility of that fat sliding off and hitting me. Ick.

And actually, it was the people that I found the most interesting. This particular truck had two men working – one was middle-aged, while the other appeared to be perhaps a few years younger than me. Both were very friendly. The older man seemed almost proud of his work, happy to have someone take an interest in his job. The younger man asked if I was going to put my photos and video on a blog, or possibly Facebook (you can hear him say “妳要放在部落格?” at the end). When I said I’d probably do both, he told me he thought Americans didn’t use Facebook, and that I looked Australian – something about the shape of my face? We had a nice chat, and I got the impression that I was a welcome distraction from what is normally tedious work.

In any case, if you’re still reading, and haven’t been bothered so far by the photos above, here’s the older man in action. Watch how smoothly he works, not even looking when he hangs the meat hooks:

If you’re interested in seeing the process for yourself, the market is located on Xi Ning South Rd., about a block south of Zhong Xiao West Rd. According to the workers, there are many trucks in and out of the market all night (I saw 3 come and go while I was there), so there will be plenty to see. Be a bit careful if you get close, though. The pavement will be covered in blood.

PS: Lest anyone feel the need to use the comments to discuss the horrors of meat-eating and the cruelty of pig slaughter, let me forewarn you that any such comments will be deleted. This blog is meant to be an exploration of urban life in Taipei, not a platform for promoting an agenda – unless, of course, that agenda is to share with others how great Taipei is.

5 Responses to “Taipei Thing #3: More about those pigs (vegetarians, beware)”

  1. Anna May 27, 2010 at 4:32 am #

    Cool! And not at all disgusting, fortunately 🙂
    I agree that if you’re afraid to look at it, you should reconsider eating it (and I’m mostly vegetarian, even).

    • ktvxiaojie May 28, 2010 at 10:25 am #

      So far it seems that most people find it to be extremely cool, not disgusting. Or maybe it’s because of my subtle message that only uncool people will find it gross. 🙂

  2. Jonas May 27, 2010 at 6:01 pm #

    u got to go in?? soooo lucky!

    • ktvxiaojie May 28, 2010 at 11:21 am #

      Haha – I knew you’d like it!


  1. Weekly Links – May 27, 2010 « The Daily Bubble Tea - May 27, 2010

    […] Like pork?  You might not after reading about Holly’s tour of a pig truck. […]

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