Don't eat chicken or eggs - and tell all
your friends, family and work/school mates not to eat them either! Go veggie! Click here for more information.
Order copies of our Killing Time chicken leaflet to give
to everyone you know.
Viva! needs your support. Please donate to our campaign and help us stop the misery of factory farming. Join Viva! if you are not already a supporter.
Send this sample letter to your local
Please support our campaign to end the factory farming of
broiler chickens by sending this sample letter to your local
newspapers Letters to the Editor page (Find listed under
Newspapers in Yellow Pages or click
here for a list). Feel free to amend it but please mention
Viva!s name and address so we can bring others into
the campaign. Remember to send your name and address to the
"Dear Letters to the Editor
I am writing to inform readers about the shocking life of
intensively farmed broiler (meat) chickens. Every
year over 800 million chickens are killed in the UK for their
meat. 98% of them are reared on factory farms. They are crammed
into foul-smelling windowless sheds and kept together in huge
numbers. Each bird is allowed an area no bigger than an A4
sheet of paper.
Animal welfare group Viva! has filmed undercover inside broiler
chicken farms and revealed shocking conditions. Piled up outside
the sheds on one farm were dead and rotting chickens. Inside
the shed, investigators found dead and dying birds being trampled
on and pecked by living ones. Some birds were so severely
deformed that they were unable to stand or walk and their
feet were splayed out to the sides of their bodies.
Chickens are selectively bred and pumped full of drugs to
reach slaughter size in just 41 days. Todays
chickens are slaughtered when they still cheep
- chicks in an obese adult body. By the time they are killed,
most of them are crippled as their legs cannot support their
body weight. Some lame birds die from starvation and dehydration
as they are unable to reach food and water points.
What is equally disturbing is that in the squalor of the
broiler house, infections spread like wildfire. Salmonella,
Listeria, Campylobacter and botulism all thrive in the sheds.
A huge percentage of birds slaughtered for human consumption
have these diseases and chicken pieces are often the salvaged
parts of damaged or diseased birds that cannot be sold as
Animal welfare group Viva! has launched a campaign to end
the factory farming of chickens. We can all do our bit to
end this misery by not eating chicken and opting for a vegetarian
diet. For a free veggie recipe pack call Viva! on: 0117 944
1000 or write to 8 York Court, Wilder St, Bristol BS2 8QH
You can also do your bit for Britain's egg layers.
There are indisputable problems with every type of egg
production - from intensive to free range (read our
fact sheet to find out more) - so the best way to help
chickens is to simply not eat their meat or eggs.
However, on a sliding scale of misery hens confined to battery
cages suffer the worst. Recent publicity has put pressure on
supermarkets to improve their chicken welfare, with both
Morrisons and Sainsbury's committing to go cage-free ahead of
the European ban on conventional battery cages in 2012.
However, both Asda and Tesco are refusing to make this
commitment, citing price. This isn't good enough and is giving
them an unfair advantage, plus condemning millions of birds to
even greater misery.
Please use our suggested letter below (or even better write
"Dear (Tesco or Asda)
I was extremely disappointed to hear that you would not be
following the lead of other supermarkets by pledging to go
Chickens in battery cages have just 550 cm2 of space -
about the area of a sheet of A4 paper. As a hen's wingspan is
76-80 cm - about the width of four pieces of A4 paper - they
spend their entire lives unable to spread their wings. Without
so much as a shred of straw for comfort, all of the hen's
natural instincts - including nesting, perching, scratching
and pecking - are denied. The bare wire mesh floor cuts into
the hens' feet and they are forced to balance on slopes of up
to 12 degrees. This is might be convenient for collecting the
eggs, but is incredibly uncomfortable for the hens.
In 1999, the Council of the European Union judged that battery
cages are so cruel they should be banned across the EU. This
is being introduced in 2012. A recent survey showed that 62
per cent of EU consumers would be willing to change where they
shop to buy more animal friendly food.
Please put principles in front of profit and commit to
going cage free.
I look forward to hearing back from you."
Philip Clarke, Chief Executive,
Tesco, Tesco House, PO Box 18, Delamare Road,
Cheshunt, Herts EN8 9SL.
Call customer services on freefone 0800 505 555
Andy Bond, President,
Asda, Asda House, Southbank, Great Wilson Street,
Leeds, LS11 5AD
Call customer services on 0500 100055