Krista spent six years as the vice president in Canada for Mercy For Animals, an international non-profit dedicated to protecting farmed animals. Her work on twelve undercover investigations of Canadian slaughterhouses and factory farms helped expose the truth of what happens behind the closed doors of these facilities. This work secured landmark legal victories for animals and led to five exposés on CTV’s W5, a CBC Marketplace episode, and other national and international media coverage.
Krista has spoken internationally on matters of farmed animal protection, and major media outlets have published her work.
"I will never be silent - the animals need me too much!"
- Krista Hiddema
Krista holds five degrees and designations, including a master’s degree focused on the human costs of the North American pork industry. Krista is currently working on her doctorate in social science at Royal Roads University with an expected completion date of February 2022.
Her particular area of academic interest is the intersectionality of oppression, and in particular she is focused on studying the value of individual relationships with farmed animals. She is doing this through application of the feminist care tradition in animal ethics, and in how these relationships are expressed through various artistic mediums.
Krista is also a member of the Editorial Team for the Journal of Critical Animal Studies.
During her time running Mercy For Animals in Canada the entire landscape for farmed animals changed. Much of this work was done through engaging with major food companies. Outcomes included: effectively eliminate gestation crates for mother pigs; veal crates for calves from both the Ontario Veal Association and the Quebec Veal Association; and turning the egg industry upside down by securing commitments to cage-free eggs from almost 100% of the food industry. She worked with Saputo, the largest dairy company in Canada, and the 7th largest in the world to dramatically improve the lives of mother cows forced to give milk, and also negotiated the first ever North American commitment to controlled atmosphere stunning by Maple Leaf Foods, Canada’s largest meat protein company.
Krista also worked with the head office of Burger King and Tim Hortons to help them to commit to improved broiler welfare. This commitment was the first major commitment to improved broiler chicken welfare in North America. With these commitments, the lives of nearly 700 million animals every year in Canada were changed forever.
Krista has appeared in the House of Commons, is well known on “The Hill” by many Members of Parliament, and has had her written work published in The Hill Times and other political papers. Krista has met with Members of Parliament regarding Canada’s outdated animal protection laws on many occasions, and she has been invited to present to the Standing Committee of Agriculture and Agri-Food, to the Animal Welfare Caucus on various legal matters regarding farmed animals, and is sought out for consultation on Canada’s food system. Krista also designed and lead one of the largest political mobilization campaigns in Canada regarding farmed animal transportation.
Krista’s first career was in human capital management and organization development, where Krista very successfully climbed the ranks of ‘corporate America’. She was the only female executive in a major manufacturing corporation and a global technology company. She then became vice president of human resources for SAP AG, one of the largest software companies in the world. Krista subsequently founded a Canadian law firm specializing in employment and labour law, where she spent ten years as one of the few non-lawyer partners of a law firm in the country.