North Carolina law-enforcement officials raided a Butterball turkey factory farm after viewing disturbing video footage of workers who abused turkeys. The video, shot during an undercover investigation by Mercy For Animals, shows workers who kick and stomp on birds, smash them into the ground, and bash in their heads with metal rods.
Mercy For Animals’ findings mirror those uncovered during PETA’s 2006 undercover investigation of a Butterball slaughterhouse in Arkansas. We documented that one employee stomped on a bird’s head until it exploded, that another smashed a turkey into a metal handrail so hard that her spine burst through her skin, and that another worker sexually assaulted a female turkey. One worker told the investigator, “If you jump on their stomachs right, they’ll pop … or their insides will come out of their [rectums].” The findings are also strikingly similar to the horrific abuses documented by PETA’s 2008 investigation of Aviagen Turkeys, Inc., which led to the first-ever indictments for felony cruelty to animals for the abuse of birds and the first-ever cruelty convictions of turkey factory-farm workers.
The abuse documented is apparently business as usual for Butterball and the turkey industry. Click here to urge the company to adopt “controlled-atmosphere killing” (CAK), in which birds are killed by inert gas while still in their transport crates, eliminating much of the opportunity for abuse at the slaughterhouse. And to help end the abuse that these intelligent, sensitive animals suffer before they make it to slaughter, refuse to eat turkeys and choose fowl-friendly faux turkey instead.