For International Respect for Chickens Day (4 May) and as important discussions about consent are taking place on college campuses in India and around the world, PETA India has erected a plea outside colleges and universities across the country reminding young people that chickens do not consent to the use and abuse of their bodies for meat and eggs. PETA India’s print campaign has been placed near colleges and universities in Delhi, Amritsar, Goa, and Hyderabad.
Most chickens used for meat spend their entire lives in crowded, filthy sheds and are bred to grow such unnaturally large upper bodies that their legs often become crippled under the weight. In the egg industry, hens are forced to produce as many as 300 eggs per year – far more than the 15 per year that their ancestors would lay in nature. If treated well, a hen has a life expectancy of about 10 years. On an egg farm, her body will typically give out after just two years. When her egg production drops, she is considered “spent” and is thrown into a lorry full of other spent females and shipped to the slaughterhouse or meat market, where her throat is cut – typically, while she’s still conscious. Meanwhile, millions of newly hatched male chicks – who cannot produce eggs – and any other unwanted chicks are thrown into garbage bags or grinders to suffocate or be crushed or hacked to death. Many others are drowned or burned.