RSN Fundraising Banner
FB Share
Email This Page
add comment

Baker writes: "After watching 'Pilgrim's Shame: Chickens Buried Alive,' it's tough to decide which is more disturbing - the combination of physical abuse and inhumane killing of chickens or the murderous mentality of the animal farmers who were secretly taped earlier this year."

At a Pilgrim factory farm, chickens are routinely buried alive. (photo: EcoWatch)
At a Pilgrim factory farm, chickens are routinely buried alive. (photo: EcoWatch)

Buried-Alive Chickens Exposed at Nation's Second-Largest Producer

By Brandon Baker, EcoWatch

27 June 14


fter watching Pilgrim’s Shame: Chickens Buried Alive, it’s tough to decide which is more disturbing—the combination of physical abuse and inhumane killing of chickens or the murderous mentality of the animal farmers who were secretly taped earlier this year.

The brief video and accompanying report on CNN’s Erin Burnett Out Front actually makes a case for the latter. Hearing an animal farmer laugh about creating a “gravy that is simmering and squirming” from the buried-alive chickens he had just finished abusing is about as chilling as anything uncovered by an animal rights activist in recent years.

The video was produced by Washington DC-based Compassion Over Killing (COK), which had an investigator pose as a wide-eyed intern to get access to the atrocities at Prince Poultry, a North Carolina chicken factory. That factory supplies Pilgrim’s Corp., the second-largest chicken producer in the country. Aside from its own line, Pilgrim’s supplies chicken to huge companies like Walmart, Kroger, Costco, Chick-fil-A, Wendy’s, Burger King, Publix and others.

Though COK says that more than 8 billion chickens are raised and killed for meat in the U.S. each year, the organization says more die in the shocking fashion exposed in its video. So naturally, agricultural lobbyists are pushing legislation that would outlaw similar undercover investigations and videos. According to CNN, three states—Idaho, Missouri and Utah—have passed “ag-gag” laws, while another 14 have considered them.

When later confronted by CNN and shown the undercover video, Prince Poultry owner Tim Prince said the faux intern “took just the very minute, little things that we’ve done wrong.” Pilgrim’s, in a statement, told CNN that it has “retrained the grower in question and his employees.”

COK Executive Director Erica Meier is hoping for a bit more than additional training, though.

“What we documented is how he is operating his facility, and it’s unfortunate that what we documented is so egregious that we hope that state authorities will get involved and prosecute this case for burying birds alive,” she said. your social media marketing partner


A note of caution regarding our comment sections:

For months a stream of media reports have warned of coordinated propaganda efforts targeting political websites based in the U.S., particularly in the run-up to the 2016 presidential election.

We too were alarmed at the patterns we were, and still are, seeing. It is clear that the provocateurs are far more savvy, disciplined, and purposeful than anything we have ever experienced before.

It is also clear that we still have elements of the same activity in our article discussion forums at this time.

We have hosted and encouraged reader expression since the turn of the century. The comments of our readers are the most vibrant, best-used interactive feature at Reader Supported News. Accordingly, we are strongly resistant to interrupting those services.

It is, however, important to note that in all likelihood hardened operatives are attempting to shape the dialog our community seeks to engage in.

Adapt and overcome.

Marc Ash
Founder, Reader Supported News

+26 # reiverpacific 2014-06-28 10:01
For Gawd's sake are these people even fucking HUMAN?
Further proof if any were needed that we are hardly nature's last word in successful evolution.
It's enough to put one off chicken for life
Maybe these bastards should be buried alive.
Check the list of stores and get on them fast!
+11 # PCPrincess 2014-06-28 10:29
I think about that very question daily and have been for quite some time. How is it that two human beings can be so drastically different? I'm assuming that you are like me, with a high level of empathy and an understanding that the world does not revolve around any one person or country (USA, ahem), but rather, that we are part of communities that grow larger the further we go outward from our neighborhood. I'm left to consider rather drastic differences in brain chemistry or configuration or perhaps differing levels of evolutionary progress? I have a hard time believing that it is merely a question of one's geography or upbringing. The one thing that I will note though is that I'm certain that empathy levels can be affected by one's own suffering over time.
+5 # Doubter 2014-06-28 14:52
"Differing levels of evolutionary progress" makes for a good partial explanation, though one has to guard from feeling 'superior,' as no doubt there exist advanced beings to whom the most civilized among us appear as savage unenlightened primitives.

I speculate that should reincarnation happen to be true, our beautiful planet has been set aside as a place of Karmic punishment for us to learn "better manners."

As shown by the Milgram experiments, a good percentage of us are capable of inflicting great pain, by thinking we are administering electric shocks, up to a fatal 500 V under orders from white coated lab assistants/inst ructors holding a clipboard. (Milgram's purpose was to show that a good percentage of us could easily turn into Nazi-like torturers under the influence of 'authority figures.')
+5 # 6thextinction 2014-06-28 11:16
See my post in previous article. Go Vegetarian! Better yet, go Vegan. You'll thank me (and your mentor) after you do.
+5 # reiverpacific 2014-06-28 19:04
Quoting 6thextinction:
See my post in previous article. Go Vegetarian! Better yet, go Vegan. You'll thank me (and your mentor) after you do.

Actually, I cook a LOT of Indian food which is mostly both (Is ghee vegan? Never quite figured that out as it's butter with the solids and impurities removed) and have lived several times without meat in different countries and enjoyed learning from the local cooks.
But what I do eat I know where it comes from, most of it local, for which I'm grateful indeed (and it's cheaper than Supermarkets too if got at the source).
And remember the Lakota "Amen" MetakuyeOyasin = All my relations, or we are all related".
0 # Kootenay Coyote 2014-06-28 20:48
Ghee is rendered butter.
0 # jsluka 2014-06-29 00:59
The Lakota subsisted primarily by killing and consuming buffalo.
+14 # pbbrodie 2014-06-28 13:37
Prince Poultry owner said, “took just the very minute, little things that we’ve done wrong.” This is actually worse than burying the chickens alive. He thinks this is a "very minute, little thing... done wrong?" This man is seriously sick!!!
+14 # Adoregon 2014-06-28 13:38
Can you spell Auschwitz??

Perhaps the same fate should be meted out to the cruel fucks in the video.

To anyone who says "they're just chickens," I say, "you have the consciousness of an SS trooper. May you suffer the same fate."
+4 # treadlightly 2014-06-28 22:15
You should see the castle that Bo Pilgrim built in Pittsburgh, Texas. What has he done for the community you might ask? He built a lovely little belltower in the middle of town so that everyone would see what a generous compassionate man he was. He owns the town. The stench from his operation there is absolutely unbearable.
+6 # Dale 2014-06-29 08:40
I used to grow chickens under Contract with Perdue Inc. in Maryand on the Chesapeak Bay. What a horrendous experience that was! Contract growers have to deal daily with large numbers of sick birds that must be killed in order to keep feed consumption as low as possible. Most dont bury sick or scrawny chicks alive, but knock they bodies against a post in the chicken house and them convey them to a compost bin. Composting replaced burying in trenches or under coverings like the ones shown in this video.
My wife and I joined efforts to organize growers,support ed unionization of chicken catchers and worked with environmental organizations to expose the pollution left by the industry. For our efforts we were forced out of the business, which was fine except that it forced our organic vegetable farm into bankruptcy as well. The business of factory farming is not just bad for chickens, pigs, and cattle, but for human decency. People who work in the industry, under unhealthy and oppressive conditons are among the most exploited and maltreated in any activity.
+4 # treadlightly 2014-06-29 11:04
Thank you Dale, you summed the situation up very well.I lived in Pittsburgh Texas and have seen all the things you described. You could have added something about the proliferation of illegal aliens who work on the farms and in the filthy processing plants. You know what keeping chickens in these quantities does to the soil. The solution to many of our problems lies in breaking up these huge operations. It would spread the job opportunities around and lessen the environmental impact.
But you know all this.

THE NEW STREAMLINED RSN LOGIN PROCESS: Register once, then login and you are ready to comment. All you need is a Username and a Password of your choosing and you are free to comment whenever you like! Welcome to the Reader Supported News community.