News: Shocking footage shows horrific conditions at Lincolnshire chicken farm

News: Shocking footage shows horrific conditions at Lincolnshire chicken farm

Another Lincolnshire Highlights news story…

Shocking undercover footage taken at a poultry farm shows chicken carcasses lying among live birds and lame chickens struggling to reach water.

The distressing footage, which animal charity Open Cages claims was taken at Barr Farm in Billinghay in April and May this year, shows hundreds of chickens living in cramped conditions.

The video shows chickens struggling to stand up, while also showing the carcasses of chickens that campaigners claim have died or been culled, piled into bins in the building.

Open Cages says the chickens are a form of ‘FrankenChicken’, which has had certain traits bred into to it to allow it grow incredibly quickly, something they say can be seen from the footage which was taken over the course of seven days.

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It added that the birds are often unable to cope with the rapid weight gain, giving rise to lameness and heart failure and skin conditions.

Chickens bred at the farm go into major UK supermarkets such as Tesco.

Dead chickens were found in the farm
(Image: Open Cages)

Veterinary professor Andrew Knight said the footage showed “a number of meat chickens with serious mobility problems” and that the scenes “were consistent with significant pain”.

The revelations come weeks after undercover activists took footage showing appalling conditions at three other Moy Park farms in Lincolnshire, while record high temperatures in July led to the deaths of thousands of chickens at one farm.

A spokesperson for Moy Park said the welfare of its birds was the company’s “highest priority”.

Bins full of culled and dead chickens were found
(Image: Open Cages)

“Following a robust assessment of the farm and a review of the footage by an experienced veterinary surgeon specialising in poultry, we are confident that the birds are displaying natural behaviours and have normal feather coverage and skin colouration for their development stage,” he said.

“Our farms are regularly inspected by external vets and industry bodies. If any issue with the care of our birds is identified it is addressed promptly in line with welfare procedures.”

He added that lameness can be caused by a number of factors, it is not specific to any particular breeding system and when it does happen those birds are removed from the flock.

“All recent independent audits have shown this farm upholds high welfare standards,” the spokesperson said. “We continually monitor our farms to ensure these standards are adhered to and all our internal audits are independently validated.

“Unauthorised access, such as this, to farm buildings breaches biosecurity standards and can cause unnecessary risk and stress to our birds.”

A spokesperson for Tesco said it was looking into the claims made by the charity.

“We take animal welfare concerns extremely seriously,” he said.

“Any claims that our standards have not been met are always fully investigated and we are currently working with Moy Park to review this situation.”



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