Canada’s Western Producer Cites United Poultry Concerns’ Opposition
CO2 Killing of Chickens – "it cannot be called humane."
Concerns * PO Box 150 * Machipongo, VA 23405
Phone: 757-678-7875 * Fax: 757-678-5070 *
Contact: Karen Davis 757-678-7875 May 18 2005
UPC’s news release "Humaneness of Killing Birds with Carbon Dioxide is Disputed
by Science" can be read online at:
When Alberta Egg Producers recently announced support for a system of destroying
chickens by dumping hundreds at once into bins holding 650 birds and killing
them with carbon dioxide, United Poultry Concerns issued a news release
(3/30/05) challenging the "humaneness" of CO2 because CO2 induces painful
suffocation in birds and "therefore should be avoided," according to poultry
expert Dr. Mohan Raj of the University of Bristol in England. By contrast, the
gaseous stun/kill system based on the use of the inert gases argon or nitrogen,
known as Controlled Atmosphere Stunning, is said to eliminate or greatly reduce
the suffering caused by pure CO2.
In "New hen killing method developed" (4/21/05) The Western Producer cited
Alberta Agriculture animal welfare specialist John Church’s claim that the CO2
system "can be used on the farm for old laying hens" and "expanded if flocks had
to be removed quickly because of a disease outbreak, such as avian influenza."
However, Calgary bureau writer Barbara Duckworth points out in her article that
"Not everyone believes the new method of killing chickens is better. In a news
release a group called United Poultry Concerns,
which promotes compassionate treatment of domestic fowl, said it’s
unlikely the killing is as quick and painless as Church claims. Pointing to a
British study describing the effects of CO2 on the body, the group said the gas
induces breathlessness which causes slow, painful suffocation. ‘The system may
be cost effective, but it cannot be called humane,’ said Karen Davis, president
of United Poultry Concerns.’" – The Western Producer April 21, 2005 (www.producer.com).
United Poultry Concerns is a nonprofit organization that promotes the
compassionate and respectful treatment of domestic fowl.