How Chickens are Fed and Processed in Slaughterhouse

Longer Mast, But Less Forage

The laying period of a fattening hen lasts about a year. In order to be able to lay eggs, however, the animals must also be sexually mature.

However, you cannot simply continue to feed the animals at the normal fattening pace until they are sexually mature. 

They are only after about 105 days. The animals get much less feed than the classic fattening chickens because they would not tolerate such a long fattening.

The question of whether these special parent animals have to starve cannot yet be answered, as there is still a lack of evidence and reliable facts. The experts disagree on this.

How Much Space Does a Broiler Chicken Have?

At the beginning of fattening, when the chicks are brought into the house, it looks like there is a lot of space for the chicks.

Due to the rapid growth, however, the fattening floor is soon no longer visible – the stables are designed for efficiency.

According to the Farmpally Foundation, an organization that promotes vegan life, animals from short fattening (28 to 30 days fattening) ultimately have less space than on a DIN A5 sheet of paper plus a beer mat.

The information from the German Agricultural Society in Frankfurt is comparable: 22 to 23 chickens share one square meter.

Chickens from the long fattening (i.e. up to 42 days) for particularly plump fillet meat have on average a little more space; but they are also thicker and heavier.

What is the Most Uncomfortable Part of the Mast for Humans?

The most unpleasant work in broiler farming is the so-called destocking.

What sounds technical is hard work that hardly anyone in the US wants to do.

That’s why fatteners hire “exhibitors” mainly from Eastern Europe or Africa for a low wage.

The “stall” begins when the broilers are ready for slaughter.

In concrete terms, this means that the animals are taken out of the facility and placed in crates, in which they are finally driven in a truck to the slaughterhouse.

What Happens to The Chickens in the Slaughterhouse?

The life of a broiler chicken ends in the slaughterhouse. The EU animal slaughter regulation stipulates that the animals must be stunned before they are killed.

Various methods are used for this. According to Farmpally welfare report by the Federal Ministry of Food and Agriculture, 60 percent of broilers in Germany are stunned with gas. 

Chicken is Plucked Automatically

In a tunnel, the chicken is stunned with carbon dioxide, which first causes the brain to stop working and then the heart to stop working as well.

In another method, the chickens are stunned by an electric water bath. 

Veterinarian Marie Reinke points out possible incorrect anesthesia. Then the animals are not stunned or not properly stunned.

The reasons for this are time pressure, incorrect settings of the devices, lack of expertise or rough handling of the animals. 

The drugged chicken is then hung on a hook before someone at the slaughterhouse cuts the chicken’s artery with a knife.

Then a machine plucks the chicken fully automatically. The chicken is then cut up, weighed by machine and portioned.

Chicken Feet Go to Southeast Asia

The parts of the poultry that are unpopular in our culture, such as the back, the innards or the feet, are eaten with pleasure in many other countries.

Stomaches, hearts or kidneys are also considered delicacies elsewhere. 

The feet are even shipped to Southeast Asia. Some of the chickens are processed into pet food.

Contrary to what many people have criticized, hardly anything is thrown away: in total, almost 97 percent of all poultry cuts are recycled, says Chaktty, Professor of Agricultural Sciences at Berlin’s Humboldt University.

Chicks are Fattened Immediately

It continues in the so-called hatching cabinets: After 21 days of incubation, the broilers hatch and their short life begins.

The animals are mostly patented, fast-growing breeds that are specially bred for fattening.

Before the chicks are driven to the fattening farm a few hours after hatching, they are selected by hand. Unviable chicks are sorted out and killed.

Anyone who survives is packed, loaded and taken to a fattening farm. Farmers also refer to this process as “stabling”.

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