Written by Michelle Kretzer
In a rousing victory for
animals, a county planning commission in the U.K. has denied a notorious
chicken factory farm a spot within its borders.
Harrison Farms had asked the Shropshire Council for permission to build an
intensive factory farm in which 330,000 chickens at a time would be tightly
crammed into dark sheds until the time came to slaughter them. But after
hearing from PETA U.K. and almost 5,000 of PETA U.K.'s
members and supporters, the council denied the application.
The animal advocates
explained to the council how factory
farms dose chickens with massive amounts of antibiotics to keep them alive in the
cramped, filthy conditions and to make them grow so large so fast that many of
them become crippled under their own weight or experience organ failure. They
also relayed how the farms cut off the ends of chickens' sensitive beaks with a
searing-hot blade to stop the frustrated birds from pecking at each other and
how the only time the chickens see grass or feel the warmth of the sun is when
they are being shipped to the slaughterhouse to have their throats slashed and be dunked in tanks of
scalding-hot water. They also gave the council information on how factory farms
are among the main contributors
to climate change.
Congratulations to everyone
who wrote in!
Written by Alisa Mullins
Last week, PETA Germany released the findings of its undercover investigation of three "free-range" egg farms. What the group found was pretty much the same kind of horror story that we've had in the U.S. and the U.K.: Far from the idyllic barnyards that people might associate with "humanely raised" or "free-range" eggs, the investigators for PETA Germany found thousands of hens confined to filthy, windowless sheds, just as chickens on "ordinary" factory farms are. The investigators videotaped dead and dying chickens among the living. Many birds were crawling with parasites, were missing most of their feathers, and had large sores all over their bodies, some of which oozed pus. In Germany, eggs labeled "bio " (organic and "humane") are supposed to come from chickens with access to the outdoors, but PETA Germany's investigators showed that the birds' access to the outdoors was often impeded or blocked, sometimes by live electrical wires!
On one farm, the investigators found exposed 15,000-volt electrical wiring that was shooting sparks. The hot wiring effectively confined birds to one section of the barn. In February, a neighboring barn with similar defective wiring burned down, killing 19,000 birds.
In 2010, PETA Germany caught another farm violating Germany's "bio" seal. The farmer now produces "free-range" eggs—the standards for which are less strict than those for the "bio" seal —but PETA Germany's most recent investigation documented apparent violations of those standards as well. The farmer has failed to provide the more than 9,000 chickens confined to his barns with minimum required space.
The 'Free-Range' Scam
"Free-range," "humanely raised," and "certified" labels in the U.S. can also be deceptive. The U.S. Department of Agriculture requires that "free-range" animals have access to outdoor areas, but the birds don't actually have to go outside, and some are too afraid to or are barred by impediments. United Egg Producers uses a label that reads, "United Egg Producers Certified," but this program is not regulated or enforced, and investigations have shown that companies using this label often do not treat chickens any differently than conventional factory farms do.
In fact, most "free-range" hens live in the same miserable, filthy factory farm conditions that "broiler" chickens (raised for their flesh) do. And like other factory-farmed hens, free-range hens are killed when their egg production begins to wane, at about 2 years of age.
Want to help hens? Stop eating eggs altogether. It's not hard. Just opt for egg replacers in baked goods and whip up some tasty, heart-healthy scrambled tofu for breakfast. For more hen-friendly cooking ideas, visit PETA.org/Living.
Written by Jeff Mackey
PETA wants to give parties on both sides of the debate over Arizona's new
law banning abortions after 20 weeks of pregnancy some other food for thought as we
get set to display a new billboard in the Phoenix area. We think that everyone
should be able to agree about death on factory farms and beyond:
© iStockphoto.com/Sascha Burkard
Billions of chickens are killed for food every year in the U.S. when they are only 6 to 7 weeks old,
and most of the pigs and turkeys killed for food are less than 1 year old. Animals killed for food feel
pain when they are stunned, have their throats cut, or are scalded to death or
dismembered while they're still conscious.
Pro-life? You can save lives by eating vegan foods. Pro-choice? Choose meals that are better for animals, your health, and our environment. Makes sense!
Chick-fil-A, the house of the homophobic waffle fries, wants
homosexual people just to accept not having equal rights and chickens just to accept having
their throats slashed and
being scalded to death.
a flock of protesters crashed Chick-fil-A's Appreciation Day to show that they don't appreciate the fast-food chain's
efforts to keep people in the closet and chickens in the factory farm shed:
protesters made their voices heard loud and clear: All living beings deserve respect.
you ever gotten that "caged animal" feeling? Now everyone who uses the
elevator at PETA's Norfolk, Virginia office, and PETA's office in Los Angeles, the Bob Barker Building, will have it,
thanks to our new elevator experience that gives visitors the feeling of being chickens inside a battery cage
on an egg factory farm.
by photos of cage bars and suffering chickens, the rider can read the writing
on the wall: "Imagine being trapped in this elevator for life with no room
to turn around. That's how a caged hen feels. Please, for chickens' sake, join
us by going vegan."
hope is that as the elevator begins to move, visitors will be moved to think
about the fact that each hen on an egg farm is shoved into a cage with five to
11 other hens and not enough room even to spread her wings. Part of her beak,
filled with nerve endings, will be cut off with a searing-hot blade. When her
egg production wanes, she'll be violently killed.
after their elevator ride, visitors who still eat eggs will choose to take the
steps … the steps leading to a more compassionate lifestyle.
a friend to hens and tweet this photo or post it to Facebook.
all seen the awesome YouTube videos of cows who were being lovey-dovey with dogs, cats, and all sorts of other
animals. So it's not surprising that a cow joined her chicken buddy at the
opening of a Chick-fil-A
food truck to ask
people to be chicken champions and not eat either of them:
Cow Appreciation Day, we think the sensitive
bovines' real message would be, "Luv Mor Chikins."
something that you might not know about PETA: We hold stock in companies whose
policies we're trying to change so that we can attend annual meetings and
resolutions to try to push
companies to stop cruel practices. McDonald's had one such meeting today, so, of course, we
were there with bells on.
campaigner Tracy Patton stood up and asked
McDonald's executives why they continue to allow their suppliers to use an archaic slaughter method that includes slicing
chickens' throats while they're still conscious and scalding them to death in
defeathering tanks. She explained to the group of shareholders that an improved
slaughter method called "controlled-atmosphere killing" (CAK) would eliminate the
worst abuses of chickens and is already used by McDonald's suppliers in Europe
and by other companies in
McDonald's execs hemmed and hawed and made excuses, but they and the
shareholders got the message that PETA isn't going to let McDonald's cruel
slaughter of hundreds of millions of chickens each year be swept under the rug.
sure that McDonald's gets the message from you, too. E-mail President Don
Thompson, and demand that the chain switch to CAK.
PETA made sure that attendees at this week's annual meeting
of KFC's parent company, Yum! Brands, in Louisville, Kentucky, would have something
to chew on besides their cruelly obtained drumsticks and wings.
As shareholders of Yum! Brands stock, PETA can attend the company's annual meeting and ask a
question during the Q&A. So Yum! bigwigs and stockholders got an earful
from PETA when it detailed how chickens used to supply KFC restaurants spend
their entire short lives mired in their own waste in cramped filthy sheds on factory farms, only to be hung upside down, sustain broken wings and legs, and often end up
scalded to death in slaughterhouse
defeathering tanks. PETA's representative then asked when the company will make the simple, badly
needed changes that were recommended
by KFC's own animal welfare advisers (who understandably resigned in frustration).
Join Pink, Sir Paul McCartney, His Holiness the Dalai Lama, the
Black Eyed Peas, and many
others in telling KFC to do right by chickens.
Last year, PETA and other animal
advocates successfully defeated "ag gag" bills in Florida, New York,
Minnesota, and Iowa. Now, another "ag gag" bill
that would make it illegal
to shoot video on a factory farm
has just passed in the House of Representatives in Utah. And once again, we're
fighting back against this unconstitutional measure.
Flush from her success in her home state of Iowa, Raising Hope star and longtime animal advocate Cloris Leachman penned a letter to Utah lawmakers on PETA's
behalf urging them not to block people from gathering the evidence needed to
prosecute animal abusers
I hope that Utah legislators recognize that with
consumer demand for better treatment of animals, they must work to enforce and
strengthen laws, not penalize those trying to expose cruel and illegal
practices. Citizens' right to document cruelty to animals—wherever it occurs—is
crucial in helping local, state, and federal officials enforce
PETA undercover investigation of factory farms has yielded evidence that workers
were abusing animals. We recorded workers who sexually assaulted a pig with a cane,
stomped on a turkey's head
until her skull exploded,
and spit tobacco into
chickens' eyes and mouth.
This indisputable proof of abuse is key to securing historic charges against and
convictions of such abusers on cruelty-to-animals charges.
residents, please ask your senators to vote against this bill and to continue
to allow people to expose blatant cruelty to animals.
A lot has been
happening this week at PETA: victories, anniversaries, and celebrations! We're
after CareerBuilder, we stopped shipments of monkeys to laboratories, and we've
done much more! Check out the latest news and victories:
What a busy week
it's been in the PETAsphere! Just in case you missed any of the big news, we've
got you covered. Follow us on Tumblr
for future news about animal rights, vegan living, and where in the world the
PETA campaigners are now.
you have a general question for PETA and would like a response, please e-mail Info@peta.org. If you need to report cruelty to
an animal, please click
here. If you are reporting an animal in imminent danger and know where to find the
animal and if the abuse is taking place right now, please call your local
police department. If the police are unresponsive, please call PETA
immediately at 757-622-7382 and press 2.
Follow PETA on Twitter!
Almost all of us grew up eating meat, wearing leather, and going to circuses and zoos. We never considered the impact of these actions on the animals involved. For whatever reason, you are now asking the question: Why should animals have rights? Read more.