Whistleblower: Mangled Chicks Thrown Alive Into Macerator at Food Lion Supplier

PETA Says Shoppers Should Stay Away, Grocers Should Reconsider Relationship

For Immediate Release:
May 5, 2022

Nicole Meyer 202-483-7382

Salisbury, N.C. – This morning, PETA sent a letter to Meg Ham, president of locally based Food Lion, asking her to reexamine the company’s relationship with chicken supplier Wayne Farms—the seventh-largest poultry producer in the U.S.—in light of video footage from a whistleblower revealing that unprofitable, injured, and overlooked chicks at a hatchery in Georgia were kept in stacked, filthy crates for prolonged periods before being dropped into a macerator and ground up alive. If the whistleblower hadn’t taken the initiative to check the crates each day, the chicks allegedly would have suffered into the following day before being killed. Grinding up unwanted chicks is standard practice in the chicken industry.

“The video footage is shocking and shows that injured chicks were left to suffer before being dumped alive into a grinder as if they were trash,” says PETA Vice President of Evidence Analysis Dan Paden. “PETA urges Wayne Farms’ customers to reexamine their ties to this company, and we remind the public that the only truly humane meal is a vegan one.”

In response to the allegations, PETA also sent letters to other grocery chains doing business with Wayne Farms—including Whole Foods, Walmart, and Harris Teeter—calling on them to reconsider their relationship with the supplier, which markets its chicken flesh as “humane” and boasts that animal welfare is “always a top priority.”

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 PETA.org or follow the group on Twitter, Facebook, or Instagram.

For Media: Contact PETA's
Media Response Team.


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 Ingrid E. Newkirk

“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