Breaking: Most Cruelty-to-Animals Charges Against Factory Farm Workers in U.S. History Filed After PETA Exposé

For Immediate Release:
October 6, 2022

Moira Colley 202-483-7382

New Oxford, Pa.

Following a PETA exposé of Plainville Farms—a national turkey supplier to top grocers, including Wegmans, Publix, and Harris Teeter—Pennsylvania State Police just charged 11 former workers with a total of 139 counts of cruelty to animals, the largest number in any factory-farmed animal case in U.S. history.

PETA’s investigator documented that workers kicked and stomped on turkeys, including birds who were sick, injured, and unable to walk. After failing to break their necks, they left the birds to convulse and die in agony on the shed floor. Instead of trying to stop this abuse, a supervisor joined in, kicking turkeys and berating the investigator for not doing the same. Workers threw hens at one another like basketballs. One worker pretended to masturbate with a dying bird, and another sat on and pretended to rape a live turkey.

“Nothing can undo the suffering that these gentle turkeys endured at Plainville Farms, but these charges show other companies that cruelty to animals has consequences,” says PETA Vice President of Evidence Analysis Daniel Paden. “PETA encourages anyone upset by what these battered birds endured to avoid complicity in the abuse on factory farms by choosing vegan meals.”

Following PETA’s investigation, Global Animal Partnership suspended Plainville Farms’ “humane” certification and Whole Foods pulled its turkey “products” from the shelves. Plainville terminated the workers and pledged to start monitoring operations using body cameras—a move PETA deemed meaningless unless the footage was livestreamed so that the public could review it and call out any further acts of cruelty.

PETA has also submitted a complaint to the Federal Trade Commission alleging that Plainville Farms is engaging in false advertising by making claims on its packaging that turkeys on its suppliers’ farms are “humanely raised” in a “stress-free environment.”

Broadcast-quality video footage from PETA’s investigation is available here.

PETA—whose motto reads, in part, that “animals are not ours to eat”—opposes speciesism, a human-supremacist worldview. For more information on PETA’s investigative newsgathering and reporting, please visit or follow the group on Twitter, Facebook, or Instagram.

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