The birds’ legs and wings often break because they’re bred to be too top-heavy and because workers carelessly shove them into transport crates and shackles.
- Chickens’ throats are slit and the animals are dropped into tanks of scalding-hot water to remove their feathers, often while they are still conscious and able to feel pain.
- KFC lets frustrated factory-farm and slaughterhouse workers handle live birds, so many of the animals end up being sadistically abused.
- At a KFC “Supplier of the Year” slaughterhouse in West Virginia, workers were documented tearing the heads off live birds, spitting tobacco into their eyes, spray-painting their faces, and violently stomping on them.
- This was discovered more than two years after KFC promised PETA that it was taking animal welfare seriously.
- KFC hides behind its Animal Welfare Advisory Council, even though five members of the council have resigned in frustration. One of them, Adele Douglass, told the Chicago Tribune that KFC “never had any meetings. They never asked any advice, and then they touted to the press that they had this animal-welfare advisory committee. I felt like I was being used.”
- How KFC Can Clean Up Its Act
PETA wants KFC to adopt the animal welfare program developed by five members of its own animal welfare board. These advisors are the world’s top poultry experts; they advise the meat industry in North America and Europe and believe that KFC can—and should—adopt them. KFC has yet to do any of the following:
- Adopt the “Animal Care Standards” program. This would lower the amount of ammonia in the air in factory farms, improve the living spaces and lighting in chicken sheds, prohibit the intentional starving of breeding birds, and ensure that birds are provided with mental and physical stimulation.
- Switch to controlled-atmosphere killing (CAK). This would prevent live birds in slaughterhouses from being abused by workers, having their throats slit, or being scalded while they were still conscious. CAK would also improve conditions for workers and decrease contamination levels in chickens’ flesh.
- Switch to mechanized chicken gathering. This would drastically reduce the number of broken bones and painful bruising that birds endure when factory-farm workers carelessly throw them into transport crates.
- Breed for health rather than rapid growth, and stop feeding drugs to chickens. This would reduce the rate at which birds suffer painful, crippling diseases and injuries, such as broken legs, heart attacks, and lung failures.
- Make all welfare standards transparent and verifiable. This would simply ensure that the animal welfare program is being adhered to through announced and unannounced independent audits (the results of which must be made available to the public through KFC’s Web site).