Consumer NZ calls out chicken meat producers
10 December 2018 | MEDIA RELEASE
Consumer NZ calls out chicken meat producers - SAFE demands they cease misleading New Zealanders.
SAFE is demanding the chicken meat industry stops misleading people, after Consumer NZ calls out Tegel, Ingham and Pams chicken for their misleading “cage-free” labelling on chicken meat products.
Consumer protection watchdog Consumer NZ announced the winners of its 2018 ‘Bad Taste’ Food Awards this weekend. Tegel, Ingham and Pams label their products as “cage-free” despite chickens bred for meat never being kept in cages, implying the products are more ethical than others.
SAFE Head of Campaigns Marianne Macdonald is not surprised Consumer NZ have recognised the chicken industry’s misleading claims, and says it is now up to producers to take those warnings seriously.
“The cage-free labelling is a lie and it’s time for chicken meat producers to tell the truth about the way chickens are raised for meat,” says Ms Macdonald.
“Hens in the egg industry are kept in cages, but chickens bred for meat have never been kept in cages. Their cage-free labelling is taking advantage of consumer awareness driven by cruelty in the egg industry. This is a cash grab, by any means necessary.”
Tegel has also recently been in hot water over misleading advertising with their animated free-range chicken ad. In a recent decision from the Advertising Standards Authority, some members of the complaints board said the ad over-exaggerated the quality of life experienced by free-range chickens and was in breach of the Code for Advertising Food.
“Chickens bred for meat have some of the worst lives of all animals. Kept in horrific conditions, crowded and standing in their own waste, many suffer from a range of painful conditions, due to being bred to grow explosively fast.”
“The industry doesn’t want caring Kiwis to know the suffering that goes into producing chicken meat, and they’re not above lying to people to ensure this.”
As well as removing misleading cage-free labels, SAFE is demanding an urgent end to the use of fast-growing chicken breeds and improvement of the conditions for those that are farmed.