1 - PRESS RELEASE
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“HER FACE IS HALF GONE”: investigation finds MUTILATION, STARVATION AT WHITE HOUSE whole foods TURKEY SUPPLIER (VIDEO)
Farm Accuses Activists of "Ecoterrorism" For Exposé of Whole Foods “Humane” Thanksgiving
November 17, 2016, Orefield, PA – Today, the animal rights network Direct Action Everywhere (DxE) released an investigation into a top-rated “free range” Whole Foods turkey supplier that has been providing turkeys to the White House for Thanksgiving for more than 50 years. The investigation at Jaindl Turkey Farms in Orefield, PA found turkeys with their beaks mutilated, struggling to eat, and so densely crowded in indoor sheds that they could not move -- contrary to the aggressive animal welfare claims made by Jaindl and Whole Foods. The farm retaliated by accusing the investigators of "ecoterrorism" for documenting the conditions on the farm. DxE activists say this and other investigations of purportedly high-welfare farms show the inherent violence in using animals for food.
“The President has been duped by Jaindl Farms into promoting violence against animals,” said DxE investigator Tiffany Walker. “We’re asking him to look at our findings and denounce, rather than promote, Jaindl and other animal-abusing enterprises.”
Jaindl Turkey Farms sells 750,000 turkeys each year and touts itself as being in the 98th percentile for animal welfare. The farm supplies Whole Foods Market stores throughout the Northeast and is certified by Whole Foods’ Global Animal Partnership animal welfare program. But DxE activists say the dead turkeys littered throughout the farm indicate multiple violations of Whole Foods’ own standards. This is the fourth investigation into a Whole Foods facility in recent years, including another turkey farm investigation in 2015 as well as an investigation into Whole Foods pork and egg suppliers. Investigators say repeated misconduct at Whole Foods’ farms shows that “humane” animal products are marketing rather than reality.
Furthermore, the activists note that Jaindl’s promotional relationship with the White House is one of many government contributions to the exploitation of animals. The U.S. Department of Agriculture spends $130 billion subsidizing animal agriculture each year, while under President Obama the USDA has moved to give farms a rubber stamp to label virtually any animal products as “humanely raised.” Meanwhile, the Washington Post notes that incoming President Trump has assembled a “rogue’s gallery” of animal industry insiders.
The investigators found a shed filled with turkey chicks whose beaks had recently been burnt and found one young bird (named “Avery Harika” by the investigators) who was mutilated, starving, and unable to walk. The investigators felt morally compelled to remove Avery for immediate veterinary care and a safe life at an animal sanctuary.
“It was both inspiring and chilling to rescue Avery,” noted DxE investigator Selena Sobanski. “We brought Avery to a place of peace, but so many others were left behind to suffer and die.”
DxE activists have held demonstrations in over 30 countries and over 160 cities worldwide. Protests are planned for the week of Thanksgiving at Whole Foods stores around the world and at the White House.
Access DxE’s full press folder, including videos and high resolution photos, here.
Direct Action Everywhere (DxE) is a network of animal rights activists across the world. We use creative protest to challenge the use of animals for food, clothing, experimentation, and entertainment. Visit Direct Action Everywhere on Facebook and at http://directactioneverywhere.com/. Follow us on Twitter @DxEverywhere.
2 - QUOTES
"Whole Foods says they raise animals with compassion. But this investigation shows there’s no way to kill animals with kindness,” said DxE Investigator and Dartmouth MBA student Julianne Perry.
“They accuse us of 'ecoterrorism' for documenting abuse and rescuing an injured bird, but the terror I've seen in over a dozen of these so-called humane farms would sicken ordinary Americans,” said DxE Co-Founder and Investigator Wayne Hsiung.
“President Obama has been duped into marketing for a criminal, violent enterprise,” said DxE Investigator Chris Van Breen.
4 - FACT SHEET
See a full fact sheet with details on the investigation, basic facts about Jaindl Turkey Farms, and specific findings here.
5 - ABOUT DIRECT ACTION EVERYWHERE
Direct Action Everywhere (DxE) is a grassroots network of animal rights activists. Starting in the San Francisco Bay Area in late 2013, DxE has since grown to have participating chapters in over 160 cities in 30 different countries. Drawing from the power of the grassroots and groundbreaking social scientific research, DxE uses creative nonviolent protest to challenge speciesism throughout society.
In January and November 2015, DxE released investigations into two of Whole Foods market’s most notable suppliers, including a “Certified Humane” egg farm and a turkey facility that was one of only three farms out of Whole Foods’ 2100+ suppliers to receive a 5+ rating on its Global Animal Partnership welfare scheme. The investigations and the ensuing protests around the world received coverage in hundreds of news outlets, including the New York Times, the Wall Street Journal, and the Washington Post.
In February, July, and October 2016, DxE released investigations of supposedly humane facilities, including a model egg supplier under California’s Proposition 2, which bans battery cages for hens; a “natural” pork supplier to Costco and the LA Dodgers; and a cage-free Costco supplier. The investigations received media coverage in the New York Times, Washington Post, and Daily Mail, among other outlets.
In June 2016, DxE released an investigation into dog meat farms in Yulin, China on ABC’s Nightline. DxE compared the violence against dogs in Yulin to violence against animals on farms in the United States.
DxE’s Open Rescue Network provides open-source educational tools and resources to democratize investigatory work. The Open Rescue Network intends to serve as infrastructure for independent, grassroots teams of animal rights investigators around the world.
6 - PRESS COVERAGE
Direct Action Everywhere has been featured in the New York Times, ABC, and the Washington Post among hundreds of other media outlets. See press highlights and a full press archive here. To contact our press team, email firstname.lastname@example.org.