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McDonald’s Sneaky Little PR Move

Written by PETA | November 22, 2011

McDonald’s has kicked its PR machine into high gear after a terrific undercover investigation by Mercy for Animals at Sparboe Farms, one of McDonald’s primary egg suppliers, revealed that workers grabbed hens by the throat and slammed them into cages, that an employee swung a hen by her feet, that male chicks were tossed into plastic bags to suffocate, that rotting corpses of hens were left in cages with live birds, and other horrendous abuses.

In response, McDonald’s announced that it will stop buying eggs from Sparboe Farms. Hang on, though—don’t let McDonald’s PR move lead you to believe that this will make a real difference for animals. We’ve seen it before. What Mercy for Animals uncovered is business as usual for factory farms, as countless PETA investigations, even of other McDonald’s suppliers, have shown.

One example: A 2007 PETA investigation of a Union City, Tennessee, slaughterhouse that supplies McDonald’s with much of its chicken flesh revealed that employees yanked birds out of shackles so aggressively that they broke the birds’ legs, amused themselves by forcing as many as six chickens into a shackle that was designed for one bird, and forcefully slammed chickens against shackles. The electrified water bath that is supposed to stun chickens before their throats are cut was not working for two days, and slaughterhouse operators knowingly allowed tens of thousands of chickens to have their throats slit while the birds were still conscious.

It isn’t good enough for McDonald’s to simply switch to buying eggs from another lousy supplier with no stricter standards of “care” than the previous cruel supplier. On filthy, intensive-confinement farms—which describes every one of McDonald’s and KFC’s suppliers—hens are crammed into feces-filled wire cages with less space than a sheet of paper for each bird, and chicks’ beaks are burned off without painkillers.

What consumers must demand are meaningful reforms and an end to the worst abuses suffered by the chickens killed for McDonald’s and KFC. Here’s one way to help chickens: Encourage the chains to switch to a less-cruel slaughter method called “controlled-atmosphere killing” (CAK). All the abuses that chickens suffer in slaughterhouses would be eliminated if McDonald’s required its suppliers to switch to CAK, because with CAK, the birds are dead before they are shackled, bled, and scalded in defeathering tanks. Yet McDonald’s and KFC have dragged their feet for years instead of switching methods, even though CAK is approved by the U.S. Department of Agriculture and even though McDonald’s European suppliers adopted this method years ago.

Buyer beware: If you eat at McDonald’s or KFC, you’re eating food created via extreme cruelty to animals. Please boycott these companies and click here to tell them that you’re not lovin’ their chicken abuse.


Written by Lindsay Pollard-Post

Commenting is closed.
  • Rachael says:

    I don’t believe that eating meat is wrong, but there is no excuse for the ill treatment/abuse of animals. I’ve decided id rather not eat meat at all than risk buying meat that has come from these conditions.

  • Eli123 says:

    I eat meat but wont be going near Mcdonalds after seeing the crulty thats not needed

  • ava says:

    I own chickens and im gonna show them in the spring. I know how they have personalities and deserve the same rights as humans. I’m starting a petition agaisnt this to make a diffrence. Whoever wants to help email me at DOWN WITH MCDONALDS!!!!

  • emilie says:


  • samantha says:

    Awwwz……this make me feel so bad, so glad i’m a vegan. 143 animals :)

  • samantha says:

    Awwwz……this make me feel so bad, so glad i’m a vegan. 143 animals :)

  • Tammy V says:

    They just need to use CAK period, not in the name of vegetarianism, or anything else, but for everybody.

  • D.A.G says:

    No matter how they slaughter chickens its still cruelty and as long as I don’t get food poisoning or contaminated food honesty I can say who cares how u do it as long as get my $1 sandwich because I have so little income.

  • Mrloudanimator says:

    Alright Yeah we are treating them horribly, and yeah some justice should be brought. But come on. Just cause some guy is doing something wrong doesn’t mean you should change your life. You can still eat meat with a good conscience. All you have to do is at least TRY to fix things and make good choices.

  • Victor says:

    Oh, I just lost my lunch :( My heart hurts for those chickens.

  • Vanessa says:

    animals have to be killed for food its just life,but they should treat chickens more nicely

  • Pixie4peace says:

    Ann- watch the doc Tapped and you will soon be boycotting coke at all establishments as well. Wishing the big guys would think about the BIG picture and not just $$.

  • May says:

    There is no such a thing as gentle killing–no meat.

  • Rev. Meg says:

    I always thought McDonalds (especially Ronald McDonald) was for children who did not have the life experience to know better than to eat there. On that note, here is a part of a letter from St. Paul to the Corinthians: ” When I was a child, I spoke like a child, I thought like a child, I reasoned like a child; when I became a man, I gave up childish ways. For now we see in a mirror dimly, but face to face. Now I know in part; then I shall understand fully, even as I have been fully understood.” In other words, learn the entire truth about McDonalds.

  • Ashley says:

    If they switched to fake chicken almost no one would notice because it is so much like the real thing, and the reason people like the chicken nuggets is the breading anyway.

  • Hicksrb says:

    Your a large company so why don’t you tell the truth and pull your business. Hurt these uncompasionate companies where it counts … The money. Do the right thing.

  • Ted Kirkpatrick says:

    Hey Mcd’s and KFC – is it too much to ask for you to switch to CAK? BTW – you haven’t gotten a penny of my $$ in years because you choose to accept extreme animal cruelty from your heartless animal carcass suppliers…

  • Ann says:

    Thanks for posting this! For several years the only thing I’ve bought at McDonald’s or KFC is diet coke, but even there, I am officially DONE. This is despicable.

  • Mel Hayward says:

    Your Brand and Your Food is one reason I am proud to be a Vegan – You are completely disgusting,your industry consumes the very life of this Planet causing pain,suffering,torture,misery for millions of helpless creatures every year -YOU ARE McCruelty & I am Not Loving It