Intensive livestock farming: investigation into a European leader in chicken production

Chickens dying, corpses scattered on the ground, buildings with no access to the outside… The Welfarm association reveals an investigation carried out on a farm belonging to a European giant in the sector. The 30 Million Friends Foundation demands measures from presidential candidates to get out of the intensive agriculture model, to which more than 8 out of 10 French people are opposed (Barometro 30 Million Friends Foundation / Ifop, January 2022).

Shocking! Filmed during the summer of 2021 by the Spanish NGO Equalia inside a farm located in the Veneto region (Italy), new investigative footage is broadcast in France by the Welfarm association for the defense of farm animals – with which the 30 Million Friends Foundation collaborate. In the video (below), we see malformed chickens, unable to stand up, as well as bird carcasses strewn across the floor. We also see an employee kicking birds, another stomping a chicken on the ground, and “catchers” breaking the animals’ necks by turning them between their fists.

In the video, we see malformed chickens, but also employees kicking birds, stomping a chicken on the ground or breaking the animals’ necks. ©Equalia /Welfarm

“We can no longer look away”

The farm in question supplies the Agricola Italiana Alimentare (AIA) group, a brand owned by the Veronesi group, 4and European producer in the sector and leader in the production of fresh poultry meat in Europe, according to the Welfarm press release (16/02/2022). ” Animals often suffer in breeding because applicable standards and controls are not up to the challenge.says Adrienne Bonnet, head of the NGO’s Campaigns, Advocacy and Legal department. As in France, the rearing of broilers in Italy is governed by a European directive that needs to be reviewed in depth. According to this directive, chickens can be crammed up to 23 per m², without access to the outside and without devices that allow them to express their natural behavior, such as perches, for example.

Shifting from intensive agriculture to more animal-friendly models is a necessity that both the EU and the Member States must take advantage of.insists the Welfarm spokesperson. We can no longer look away, not only at the animals, but also because the products from these farms are found on the dishes of European consumers. Animal advocates therefore recommend reducing densities on farms, favoring slow-growing breeds and, above all, supporting access to the great outdoors. ” This would, at the very least, combine greater long-term disease resistance and better consideration of animal welfare. », Raises the NGO. In fact, intensive animal husbandry promotes the emergence of new zoonoses (diseases transmitted from animals to humans, editor’s note) by bringing together high concentrations of animals of the same species in an enclosed space.

According to the barometer carried out by the 30 Million Friends Foundation with Ifop (January 2022), 85% of our fellow citizens are calling for an end to intensive agriculture. ” Survey after survey, the French show that they are increasingly mobilized for the protection of animalssays Reha Hutin, president of the 30 Million Friends Foundation. By placing animal welfare among their top concerns for the presidential election, they are asking candidates to make ambitious and concrete proposals in this area. »

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