Every year 650 million chickens are raised for meat in Canada, the most of any species.

Chickens are intensively reared in groups of 5,000 to 65,000 birds in large sheds, dimmed to keep the birds inactive and to lower costs. This causes birds stress and often blindness. Poor air and litter quality causes respiratory infections.

Factory farms were designed for one thing: putting out the most product in the least time

Factory "farms" are actually fast-paced, mechanized facilities. This stressful environment purposefully leaves no room for human beings to act on their innate compassion.

See our step-by-step infographic
"The Life of a Factory Farmed Chicken"

Today’s farms force birds to gain weight 6 times faster than normal. Imagine a human 5-month old weighing 60 lb

Genetic selection and antibiotics are used to induce rapid growth, which causes crippling skeletal and heart disorders. As a result, the birds’ fragile bones can't support their body weight. They are often injured before and during transport.

1920

1 kg in in 112 days

1988

1.36 kg in in 84 days

2015

1.75 kg in 33 days
(6X natural growth rate)

Farmers can be penalized if their birds don't meet weight requirements.

Each province in Canada has strict Supply Management regulations. Farms with more than the provincially-set number of birds (often 100) must buy "quota", which strictly defines what farms may produce. Farms buy broiler chicks from hatcheries (often owned by kill plants), and contract with the kill plant to buy back and transport the birds at specified weights.

Meat chickens live for only about a month before being killed

The meat you see in grocery stores comes from immature chicks equivalent to 5 months old in human years. They don’t even have full feathers yet. They are living beings, yet we grant them none of life’s joys: a mother’s love, playing, or even seeing the sun.

Meat Chickens live about 1 month

Broiler breeder birds live about 1 year

Natural life of chickens: 15-20 YEARS

How long do wild birds live?

Many birds live for years in the wild, some into ripe old age, even with predators and natural adversity. Wouldn't you trade a year’s life in nightmarish confinement for even a month to truly experience life? What broiler birds have is not life.

The plight of broiler breeder birds

Constant Hunger

Breeders suffer nutritional deficiencies and constant hunger due to feed restriction to curb growth. Male breeders have a plastic rod inserted painfully into the nasal cavity to prevent them from accessing hens’ food.

Mutilation Without Anesthetic

To reduce aggression from stress, breeders have their toes and beaks cut off. Males have their combs and leg spurs painfully cut off. A better solution is to improve the living conditions.

The greatest thing you can do is eat less chicken

Reducing consumption reduces suffering! It also happens to be great for your overall health and for the environment.

Industry changes we will push for:

Let's go back to slower-growth breeds (see "A Case For Slower Growth" (PDF) from ASPCA for more).

Let's move birds into a richer environment where they can nest, perch, forage, and engage in other natural behaviors.

Let's stop use of antibiotics used to encourage growth. See our full report (PDF) for what we learned form the Maple Lodge Farms trial, plus more recommendations.


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