Investigation Exposes Horrifying Cruelty to Chickens Raised for Meat

Shocking footage has exposed sadistic cruelty to chickens raised for meat in Canada.

The footage was taken at several properties by an investigator for Mercy for Animals (MFA) who was hired by Elite Farm Services Ltd. in May to load chickens into crates before they’re transported.

“This is the worst footage I have ever seen. The level of abuse is simply sadistic,” Krista Hiddema, vice president at MFA, told CTV News.

What was captured on film goes far beyond disturbing. Workers were seen throwing birds, roughly cramming them into transport crates, stomping on them, hitting them, leaving sick and injured birds to slowly die, running them over with machinery, tormenting them by using them to imitate sex acts with each other and birds, and ripping limbs off of live birds, among other horrifying actions, which were carried out in some cases in full view of management.

Warning: the footage below is graphic.

According to MFA, abuse was reported to supervisors by the investigator, but no action was taken. Since the footage was released, five employees and one supervisor have been fired, and the case is now being investigated by both investigated by both the Canadian Food Inspection Agency and the BC SPCA.

Elite itself works directly for Sofina Foods Inc., which sells a lot of its chicken under the Lilydale brand in major grocery stores, including Safeway and Loblaws. The companies involved have denounced the footage and say this type of abuse won’t be tolerated, and are investigating internally, but we’ve seen it before and we’ll see it again. Throwing a few terrible people under the bus hardly solves the systemic cruelty inherent in animal agriculture.

Sadly, this is the second time Sofina Foods and the Lilydale brand have come under fire following an undercover investigation. Last year, both were in the spotlight following the release of footage by MFA that exposed blatant cruelty and violent slaughter methods turkeys are subjected to.

MFA is now calling on Loblaws to adopt meaningful animal welfare policies for its supply chain, and is pushing for criminal charges against the workers and companies involved in this case, which the BC SPCA said it will be recommending.

Far more importantly, the organization is calling on people to end this suffering now by making more compassionate decisions about the foods we eat, and leaving meat off our plates. Hopefully this investigation will get more people to question whether we should be giving our money to companies that treat animals like literal trash.

For more on the investigation, visit For more on alternatives to chicken and other meats, check out Choose Veg.

Photo credit: Thinkstock


Marie W
Marie W3 months ago

Thanks for sharing.

Paola S
Paola S6 months ago


Carl R
Carl R7 months ago


Celine Russo
Celine Russo9 months ago

I always think that these people should get treated the same way they treated the animals (don't know how you would toss them like a ball though) then they MIGHT think over what they've done. it's just because people think animals aren't "living" beings that they treat them like this!

Carl R
Carl R9 months ago


Deborah W
Deborah W9 months ago

Although the abuse was reported to supervisors by the investigator, no meaningful action was taken, only a good will gesture of 5 employees and 1 supervisor being fired, with the case now under "investigation". The companies involved, as usual, have denounced the footage, saying this type of abuse won’t be tolerated. WHAT A CROCK ... throwing a few people under the bus hardly solves the systemic cruelty inherent in animal agriculture. Sadly, this is not the first time such blatant cruelty and violent slaughter methods have been exposed. New regulations, implementation, and oversight all take commitment, time investment, AND MONEY AWAY FROM PROFITS. Hope springs eternal ... but in your hearts of hearts, customer-wants and for-profit lust have the biggest muscles and will continue to drive this engine.

Margie F
Margie FOURIE9 months ago

Very sad

Shirley S
Shirley S9 months ago

Intolerable !

earthism info
earthism info9 months ago

ban these chicken raising centres

Terri S
Terri S9 months ago

Where do these sick-ass workers come from??? Do their parents raise them to torture innocent beings?? They should be fired and removed from society for life!! I wouldn't want them anywhere near my home or family!!! MAY THEY ROT IN HELL!!!!!