Bird Flu Outbreak Prompts Pointed PETA Billboard

Filthy Poultry Farms Breed Fatal Flu—Tofu Factories Don't

For Immediate Release:
January 21, 2016

Contact:
Sophia Charchuk 202-483-7382

Dubois County, Ind. – The outbreak of the new H7N8 strain of bird flu in Indiana’s top poultry-producing county has prompted officials to order the deaths of more than 400,000 chickens and turkeys—and in response, PETA plans to place a billboard in Dubois County that shows a chicken hanging by the feet in front of a blood-spattered wall, with this caption: “Bird Flu. The Writing Is on the Wall. Go Vegan.” PETA—whose motto reads, in part, that “animals are not ours to eat”—hopes to remind everyone that crowded poultry farms, where animals stand and sleep amid their own waste, are breeding grounds for dangerous bacteria and viruses like avian flu.

“You’ll never catch the flu from tofu, but when tens of thousands of birds are crammed into sheds and forced to stand in their own waste and breathe in the fumes, diseases spread and can mutate into different strains quickly,” says PETA President Ingrid Newkirk. “PETA calls on people who care about animals or simply their own health to do what many other diners are doing nowadays and choose healthy vegan meals.”

On a poultry farm, one shed may house tens of thousands of birds who are never allowed outside and don’t have the opportunity to breathe fresh air. These sensitive, inquisitive animals are surrounded by their own waste and breathe in ammonia-laden air that burns their lungs and damages their immune systems. When one bird gets sick, the disease can quickly spread to all the other birds in a shed—and coming into contact with infected chicken meat or eggs puts consumers’ health at risk.

Fortunately, vegan products such as tofu, meat-free tenders, plant-based “turkey” and other deli slices, egg-free mayonnaise, and more are widely available and carry none of the disease risk—or the saturated animal fat and cholesterol—that turkey and chicken flesh and eggs do.

For more information and to see the billboard, please visit PETA.org.

For Media: Contact PETA's
Media Response Team.

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“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

— Ingrid E. Newkirk, PETA President and co-author of Animalkind