Enough to Stop You Eating Chicken

The meat industry lacks transparency that more and more people are demanding.
Image: Shutterstock

There is a nasty underbelly of the food industry that is often overlooked.  The plants where chicken and meat are processed are usually places nobody but the workers ever actually see.  There is a reason why they don’t want you to know about it.  If you did, you would probably stop eating meat.

To begin with, people with cameras or outside observers are not allowed in.  The food industry has lobbied hard to make it illegal.  Some of these laws are given the abbreviation “ag-gag laws.”  The “ag” stands for agriculture and gag clearly means you cannot talk about it.  But why all the silence?

People want to know the story behind their food, and the movement is only growing.  The problem is that the agricultural conglomerate is very guarded and wants to offer zero transparency.  They are mainly worried that if you see what really happens, you will stop eating meat.  That means less money for them.  However, the chances are, you won’t stop eating meat.  You might, however, want to see laws that make the whole process more humane.

Images that have come out of these types of places include footage of downer cows (ones so disabled that they can’t even walk) being slaughtered, factory farms with cages upon cages stuffed so full of chickens that they can’t move and actually urinate and defecate on the ones with cages underneath.

Because of some of the footage, one of the farms was temporarily shut down.  It got people talking and thinking about whether they should buy food that comes from a place like that.  Unfortunately, that kind of story is common.

A man who works at a processing plant shares how chickens at his plant are killed.  This is graphic stuff, so be warned.

“They are taken to live hang where they get electroshock ‘therapy’ more or less. They go through multiple processes to kill bacteria, de-feather, pull out the gizzards. They then go through the chillers, which kill even more bacteria and bring their temperature way down. They are then rehung and go through a long line that cuts off the legs, thighs, wings. From there, there are different sections that do their part to trim fat, remove any extra bones, etc. They then get packaged (tray form or individual vacuum sealed wrappers) and go to shipping.”

That’s basically start to finish.  When asked if he thought the food was okay to eat, he said yes, but to avoid chicken nuggets because “they’re made from skin, few bones, fat, whatever meat is attached to the skin.”

You be the judge.


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