Scam Vencobb and Karnataka Poultry Ad Pulled After PETA India Complaint

For Immediate Release: 

23 April 2020  


Hiraj Laljani; [email protected] 

Dr Kiran Ahuja; [email protected]

Advertising Standards Council Demands Removal of Shameful Ad Falsely Claiming That Eating Chicken Can ‘Beat Corona’ 

Bengaluru – Immediately after receiving a complaint from People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals (PETA) India about an advertisement by the Karnataka Poultry Farmers & Breeders Association and Vencobb – part of All India Poultry Development and Services Private Limited – that claims that eating chicken boosts immunity, the Advertising Standards Council of India called on everyone using the ad online to take it down. The council informed PETA India that it had “processed the complaint for the claim … for which the advertiser immediately removed the objected Facebook advertisement”. And later, it stated, “We have written to the Poultry Farmers and Breeders Association Maharashtra and Venky’s and have asked the advertisers to withdraw the offending advertisements.” Although filthy live-animal markets are linked to the spread of avian flu and other viruses that can cross the species barrier, the ad falsely claims, “Eat Chicken – Beat Corona!!” evidently in an effort to boost chicken-meat sales.  

PETA India points out that there’s no known vaccine or cure for the novel coronavirus and no scientific evidence whatsoever that eating meat boosts immunity or helps fight COVID-19. Rather, the virus is associated with meat markets and is most prevalent in countries where eating chicken is common – including the United States, Italy, Spain, and China. In its COVID-19 guidelines, the World Health Organization urges people to “avoid direct contact with animals and surfaces in contact with animals” at live-animal markets. Most people in India buy chickens at such markets. 

“Filthy animal farms, slaughterhouses, and meat markets threaten the health of every human being on the planet by providing a breeding ground for catastrophic viruses,” says PETA India Vegan Outreach Coordinator Dr Kiran Ahuja. “PETA India encourages anyone who wants to help prevent future pandemics to avoid meat like the plague.” 

Deadly outbreaks of swine flu, bird flu, SARS, HIV, Ebola, and other zoonotic diseases are believed to have stemmed from farming domesticated animals or capturing or raising wild animals for food. Pathogens flourish on filthy animal farms, in meat markets, and in slaughterhouses, which offer the perfect conditions for viruses to jump the species barrier and which act as breeding grounds for new strains. 

PETA India also notes that in addition to helping to combat infectious diseases, each person who goes vegan reduces their risk of developing heart disease, diabetes, and cancer and spares sensitive animals daily suffering and a terrifying death. 

PETA India – whose motto reads, in part, that “animals are not ours to eat” – opposes speciesism, a human-supremacist worldview. For more information, please visit