Compassion Over Killing Footage Prompts Groundbreaking Cruelty Convictions for Broiler Breeders


August 2017: In a groundbreaking series of cases prompted by Compassion Over Killing’s undercover footage from several Tyson Foods broiler breeder facilities in Virginia, nine former Tyson employees have been convicted on 22 counts of cruelty to animals. These convictions– the first-ever for broiler breeders–are a monumental victory in achieving justice for farmed animals!

COK’s 2016 investigation documented Tyson workers punching and kicking live birds and birds being crushed to death by transport crates and run over by forklifts. Among those convicted of cruelty was the owner of a farm contracted by Tyson, sentenced to 30 days (suspended) and barred for two years from supervising a chicken production crew.

COK’s undercover footage also revealed, for the first time on hidden camera, the barbaric practice of nose “boning”–in which a dull plastic rod is stabbed through male breeder birds’ nostrils to restrict food intake. Now, this unprecedented footage has led to the conviction of a former Tyson worker for engaging in this cruel practice.

Although “nose bones” are set to fly the coop, as Tyson and several other major chicken producers have stopped using them due to COK’s investigation, Tyson has yet to address the root problem: that this poultry giant still breeds birds so unnaturally large, so quickly, and with such insatiable appetites, that they must be starved so they’ll live long enough to breed.

These convictions are a landmark moment for broiler breeders, sending a clear message that “those who commit cruelty to animals will be held accountable for their actions,” according to Virginia Attorney General Mark Herring. Yet millions of birds are still suffering in darkness at Tyson right now. Help end this suffering: Share COK’s petition and tag @TysonFoods on social media today!