Marks & Spencer slammed for chicken farm cruelty, casting doubts on ‘High Welfare’ label

Katie Hill - Editor-in-Chief, My Green Pod

Home » M&S cruelty exposed

Published: 19 December 2016

This Article was Written by: Katie Hill - My Green Pod


Animal welfare charity PETA has obtained eyewitness video footage of horrific conditions in sheds at two broiler chicken farms that supply Marks & Spencer, raising serious doubts over the company’s ‘High Welfare’ meat labels.

’Nightmarish conditions’

The exposés reveal live birds packed among rotting corpses so tightly that they can barely spread a wing. This is despite Marks & Spencer’s claim that it provides animals with an enriched environment.

Stressed birds are also seen struggling to stand up, meaning they may have trouble reaching water – a common problem for chickens bred to grow so quickly that they become crippled – despite the company’s claim that the animals have constant access to food and water.

‘The excruciating, nightmarish conditions endured by these chickens supplied to Marks & Spencer show that it doesn’t matter which brand you buy or what label you put on it – meat comes from agony.

‘PETA urges everyone to help stop cruelty to animals by choosing delicious, nutritious vegan meals.’

PETA Director

Exclusive to Oakham line

The harrowing footage was captured in chicken sheds on two separate farms – in Norfolk and Cambridgeshire – that supply chickens exclusively for Marks & Spencer’s Oakham line.

An eyewitness visited the farms on multiple occasions and uncovered ‘sickening cruelty’ every time.

M&S chicken farms

Factory farms

Chickens on British factory farms often spend their lives with tens of thousands of other birds in sheds that stink of ammonia.

They’re dosed with antibiotics to fight disease and bred to grow so large so fast that many of them collapse under their own weight and experience organ failure.

Severe crowding and often filthy conditions leave them highly susceptible to chronic respiratory diseases. They are killed for their flesh at around 40 days old, when they reach ‘slaughter weight’.

At the abattoir, they are often shackled upside down and their throats are slit, while others are scalded – sometimes while still alive – in defeathering tanks.

Click here for PETA’s vegan starter kit.

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