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Take It Away! PETA Steals McDonald’s Show

Written by PETA | February 10, 2011

PETA’s newest campaign strategy against McCruelty appears to be working. We have been making unscheduled appearances at the speaking engagements of McDonald’s executives in order to hold them accountable for their archaic and cruel chicken slaughter methods. When we recently interrupted McDonald’s director of U.S. communications at the Online Marketing Summit in San Diego, she said on camera that she’d be willing to discuss our concerns in a sit-down meeting.

We are asking McDonald’s to institute a less-cruel slaughter method for chickens raised for the restaurant called “controlled-atmosphere killing” (CAK), which is already in use by their European suppliers. Currently, chickens raised for McDonald’s in the U.S. and Canada are dumped out of their transport crates and hung upside down in metal shackles. They watch other chickens have their throats cut while they wait for their turn before being scalded to death in defeathering tanks.

We hope that McDonald’s will follow through and agree to talk with PETA about instituting CAK. In the meantime, please take a moment to tell McDonald’s that you support less cruel methods of chicken slaughter, and sport your McCruelty gear with pride.

Written by Michelle Sherrow

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  • PETA says:

    melmac- As an animal protection group, we don’t condone or encourage any means of killing animals for their flesh. There is simply no humane way to kill animals for food, and the vast number of animals required to feed humans’ current meat habit makes individual attention to their wants and needs impossible. However, the less cruel controlled-atmosphere killing method for birds, while not perfect, helps to significantly improve animal welfare and should be adopted by producers. There are several such systems currently available for commercial use and a number of large-scale systems have already been implemented in the U.K. with great success. To read PETA’s report on how replacing current killing methods with controlled-atmosphere killing can reduce suffering, visit

  • lizzy says:

    @melmac. I understand where you’re coming from. It can seem hypocritical and confusing to those we are trying to reach. However, McDonald’s primary menu items contain chicken and beef. Without animal flesh, there would be no McDonald’s. Unfortunately, we are quite a distance away from abolishing meat from their menu, so in the mean time, I feel that it is up to PETA as well as outspoken and passionate people to plead that since they are going to have these animals slaughtered regardless, to please do it in the most humane way possible. This does not mean that we support slaughter in any way, we are just selecting the lesser of the two evils until we finally have the power to make sure that slaughter of any kind is ended. I respect your opinion and your point of view and I understand the point you are trying to make, but if there is a chance that I could be a part of something that could at least help alleviate the physical pain that animals must endure while being slaughtered until we can finally end this evil, I’m there.

  • melmac says:

    Lizzy, while your comments are noble, they still harm the advocacy cause. People see hypocritical behavior when one supports something that is counter to their cause – this case, eliminating the use of meat, but saying support CAK. Given that McD’s is refusing to try it, I’d say that the hypocritical stance isn’t working, but instead actually harming the chance that the protests will be successful ever. Truly, IMHO a firm stance, not one that contradicts PETA’s mission statement (the basic four statements on the front of the page – including “Animals are not to be used IN ANY WAY,”) will truly get results. Right now, I sincerely believe that McD’s isn’t going to listen for that reason. They don’t trust your ideas because they don’t know which one you truly stand for.

  • lizzy says:

    @melmac I’m not arguing the fact that chicken slaughter should be gone with as well as slaughter of any kind. However, this world is not letting go of their meat eating ways as much or as quickly as we all would like. Until we are able to convince people of the health risks that eating meat leads to as well as how evil the idea of eating innocent creatures is, why not try and lessen the physical pain these creatures must endure while being slaughtered? We’re not abandoning the cause of ending animal slaughter once and for all, we’re just looking for these companies to adopt a more humane method of slaughter in the mean time until we get there.

  • melmac says:

    @Lizzy and @Rita, I think you’re missing the point. You can’t nor should support something that still kills the animal in the end for food. Not if you’re supporting going vegan. I really think PETA should stick tough to their stance of going vegetarian/vegan and instead of just telling McD’s to change something (which obviously isn’t working) to instead encourage more vegetarian options on the menu and reducing the need for animal products. They could give vegetarian only prizes on their Monopoly games and encourage people to use them. The only way to stop the need for animals is to reduce the taste for them. You can do that by encouraging healthier options – it’s less effective to change it through protests.

  • lizzy says:

    @Melmac. I absolutely agree that regardless of the method, chickens should not be killed for any reason. However, until we are able to abolish killing animals for food in the world, a more humane method of killing is a better option than what the method that is practiced by most today. It’s still not right, but at least it’s not as horrific a death for the chickens.

  • JT says:

    I wish I was that girl!! I would so do that, good for her! Stand up for those who don’t have voices!!!!!!!!!! Bless u!!!!!

  • Izzy Inglasies says:

    The People Screaming Booo..Are Just Afraid To Try Stuff Other Than Meatt.

  • Rita says:

    melmac, murder is murder, no matter what the method. And murder is terrible. But as terrible as it may be, unfortunately the world isn’t going to suddenly go vegan any time soon. 🙁 While we should never stop striving for that and hoping it will happen, in the meantime, something needs to be done for chickens now, who sadly can’t be saved. It’s tragic that they can’t be helped, but being killed with the CAK is a lot better than hanging upside down and having your throat slashed while still conscious, don’t you think? Their final moments don’t have to be miserable and full of fear and pain.

  • Melmca says:

    You said she’d address your concerns, but I’m highly skeptical about that. It could be more of a cease and desist. What I find funny is the comments regarding CAK – isn’t that cruel because you’re still KILLING the animal? To me, any death is cruel, and find it rather hypocritical that you’d support it – even as a means of going totally vegan.

  • Linda Absher says:

    Good of her . She would’ve been ignored if she had just raised her hand to speak.

  • Yesenia says:

    That was awesome! Good job. 🙂

  • melmac says:

    CAK is cruel because you’re still killing the chickens. Death is cruel unless they die of natural causes. Why do you support CAK if it still kills the animal for food?

  • Darrin says:

    its great to see someone take stand like that! super brave good job!

  • Claudine Erlandson says:

    That’s why I love PETA and their courage! The Chickens love you too PETA and thank you to try to lessen their suffering! Going VEGAN is even better! 😉

  • Tummi says:

    I approve of this! Go PETA!!!!!!!!!!!!!

  • Carrie says:

    Lovely girl for doing this. McDonalds owes it to consumers and animals to end the worst abuses of chickens killed for their chain. Hey Yaboy: Good news. PETA gives homeless people clothes.

  • yaboy says:


  • Rachel Davidson says:

    I enjoyed watching this! It makes me happy to know that there are people who are compassionate enough to do this! The people booing her will never learn…

  • nancy says:

    Wow, you could tell they felt their cruel policies were threatened by PETA by their strong reactions. They couldn’t even stand to hear her speak for a minute. Thanks for getting their attention.

  • Lukka says:

    I don’t eat McDonalds food because of this! Please stop these cruel methods of slaughtering and show respect to lives of others and be a good example for the other bad companies out there and then maybe you’ll gain me as a customer 🙂

  • cassandra pappas says:

    The cruelty continues although they know that there is an alternative. Why don’t they stop? I am amazed that no action is taken by such an important multinational company which promotes itself as having a caring, family-oriented image. I have just seen the above video of the Peta representative trying to take a stand for these animals and talk to a room full of McDonalds executives who would not even listen for two minutes and simply booed her. None of our family members or friends go to McDonalds anymore (and they aren’t vegetarians) and I will continue to spread the word even more that this company is completely unethical. I am shocked at such hellish treatment especially by such a supposedly politically correct company — a politically correct company with more than substantial means to stop this infinitely cruel practice. Words cannot describe this horrid torture and death that these animals must endure.I am sickened to no end when I see instances like these where humankind, instead of being the good shepherd to the animal kingdom and nature is its worst torturer and these victims have no voice, no rights, no choice. Laws are not made strong enough or enforced as they should be to protect these animals. Thank you Peta for your strong voice.

  • anna says:

    I won’t ever eat from Mcdonalds again after hearing this. keep me posted. disgusting – shameful and barbaric.

  • Zenna says:

    Who are the idiots booing?

  • chris says:

    What a shock that brave woman was booed. McDonald’s executives have proven that making money is more important than anything else, and adopting less-cruel slaughter methods will hurt their bottom line. We as the public, need to simply boycott this establishment.

  • AgelessAnnie says:

    I am very happy about the CAK treatment the chickens are receiving, McDonalds kills two billion of these gentle creatures every year. (Makes me sick to my stomach!) But! Does this “CAK” really dull the senses of the birds enough so they become semi-unconscious and. hopefully, not as “awake” to what’s happening?

  • SKB says:

    Please have and show more respect for these animals that are giving their lives for you, although it is not necessary to eat meat to survive. These creatures have feelings and emotions just like humans do. I can’t imagine how I would feel, should I be shackled, and awaiting my gruesome, terrifying and painful death. Please, do the right thing.