Undercover Video Reveals Horrifying Chicken Abuse at Tyson Supplier — Again

Yes, it’s happening again. The cruelty at poultry farms never seems to end. Yet another undercover investigation has revealed heartbreaking abuse by workers at a supplier for Tyson Foods.

This time, it’s a chicken farm in Temperanceville, Virginia, on the state’s Eastern Shore. An investigator for Compassion Over Killing spent six weeks working at Atlantic Farm — and what that individual managed to capture on video will make you angry and sick.

According to COK, the footage shows:

  • Workers violently kicking, slamming or throwing live birds
  • A worker impaling live chicks with a metal nail at the end of a pipe
  • Birds run over and crushed to death by forklifts
  • Workers killing sick or injured birds by stepping on them
  • Sick or injured birds piled on top of each other in buckets — often with dead birds — and left to suffer and die
  • Birds unable to walk because of painful leg injuries or deformities related to rapid growth

See some of the footage here and judge for yourself. But be warned, it’s not pretty:

“Our hidden-camera footage uncovers the egregious and systemic horrors Tyson allows its birds to endure behind closed doors,” said COK executive director Erica Meier on the group’s web page.

“It’s time for Tyson to be a true leader by tackling the most pressing issues in its industry today by immediately ending the genetic manipulation of birds for rapid growth and expanding its investment in the consumer-driven future of food: plant-based proteins,” Meier added.

Tyson Foods’ group president of poultry, Doug Ramsey, says Tyson has terminated its contract with Atlantic Farm and taken all chickens belonging to Tyson somewhere else. Tyson will hold a video conference with its poultry live production managers, during which senior managers will emphasize Tyson’s commitment and policies relating to animal welfare.

One wonders what the tone of this video conference will be? True emphasis on improving animal welfare, or grudging insistence that workers not do things that will not look bad on camera in the future? We’ll never know.

Impaled on nail, because it's easier.  Photo credit: Compassion Over Killing

Impaled on nail, because it’s easier. Photo credit: Compassion Over Killing

And this isn’t the first time Tyson has come under fire for its suppliers’ abuse of chickens.

Just since 2015, at least six different undercover investigations produced damning footage of abuse at poultry farms across the country. Mercy for Animals, the Animal Legal Defense Fund and COK each obtained video showing unacceptable treatment of chickens and turkeys.

In 2016, several former Tyson employees were convicted of 24 counts of animal cruelty after a COK investigation produced video proof of abuse similar to what’s been going on at Atlantic Farm — punching, kicking and throwing live birds, crushing them with forklifts, slamming birds into transport crates and more. A year later, here we are again.

“What is always shown and discovered at every single facility and every operation along the process, from hatchery to slaughter plant, shows the same worker abuses of the chickens,” Karen Davis, founder of activist group United Poultry Concerns, told DelmarvaNow. “These are environments where workers can do anything they want to the birds and get away with it, because that’s the culture and that’s the nature of the workplace.”

Atlantic Farm fired 10 employees after this particular event, but it feels like a tiny bandage that ignores a much larger problem.

Cramped in small cages.  Photo credit: Compassion Over Killing

Cramped in small cages. Photo credit: Compassion Over Killing

When we don’t value the lives of the animals, we treat them as “things.” We conveniently ignore that farmed animals are intelligent, sensitive individuals who value their lives as much as we value our own.

plant-based diet offers a compelling solution: leaving these animals alone.

124 comments

Marie W
Marie W6 months ago

Thanks

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William Eaves
William Eaves11 months ago

These places should be shut down, and the criminals prosecuted. I also do not see the necessity to 'protect' these individuals identities by pixelating their features. Scum like this ought to be identified.

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sandy Gardner
sandy Gardner11 months ago

TYSON: A Tradition of Torture. They just keep doing it over and over, 24 hours a day, 7 days a week!

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sandy Gardner
sandy Gardner11 months ago

Go Vegan!

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sandy Gardner
sandy Gardner11 months ago

AVOID BRUTAL TORTURER TYSON at all costs!

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Angela K
Angela K12 months ago

petition signed & shared

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christine s
christine s12 months ago

This is one of the many reasons I have been vegetarian since 7 yrs and vegan for the last 4 yrs. I just don't understand why or HOW these people can do such horrific things to living beings--it makes no sense to me --no empathy I guess.

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Amanda M
Amanda McConnell12 months ago

Thanks for sharing

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Amanda M
Amanda McConnell12 months ago

=(

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Linda Hernandez
Linda Hernandez12 months ago

this is why i dont eat any product Tyson puts out..or Kentucky Fried Chicken..they are both big animal abusers. people need to stop buying their products and boycott them. its an atrocity how much these poor chickens suffer..makes me so sad and so pissing mad..to see this still going on

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