The brand that PETA calls possibly the worst offender when it comes to animal cruelty was sued twice for misleading customers with the label that implies chickens were raised happily and with some dignity.
“Perdue rejects the plaintiffs’ allegations and maintains that its labels are not misleading in any way. Nonetheless, it has agreed to discontinue the labeling claim at issue,” stated Herb Frerichs, Perdue Farms’ general counsel.
Perhaps this agreement has something to do with the fact that undercover investigations have shown that Perdue’s chickens are raised in a space the size of a sheet of paper, crammed with others so tightly that they suffer broken bones that go untreated, and are placed in sheds that reek of ammonia.
“Companies like Perdue are exploiting the dramatic growth of consumer demand for improved animal welfare for their own profit,” explained the Humane Society’s vice president and chief counsel of Animal Protection Litigation. “Rather than implementing humane reforms, Perdue has simply slapped ‘humanely raised’ stickers on its factory farmed products, hoping consumers won’t know the difference.”
Sadly, Perdue isn’t the only one doing this. Temple Grandin, PhD., an expert in animal slaughtering wrote that “The National Chicken Council Animal Welfare audit has a scoring system that is so lax that it allows plants or farms with really bad practices to pass.”
To qualify for the “humanely raised” label, brands have to give animals the bare basics of sufficient food, water, ventilation and enough space for each bird. Is that really too much to ask?