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Food Integrity Campaign Blog

You Can Promote Truth in Agriculture: Lend Your Voice to a Small Farmer!

Food Integrity Campaign | December 8, 2014

The Food Integrity Campaign announced Friday that we are representing contract poultry farmer Craig Watts, who bravely publicized concerns last week that behemoth chicken producer Perdue is being misleading about its animal welfare labels. We know consumers care about these issues, and with your help spreading Craig’s message through social media, you can demand accountability and transparency from Big Ag.

After raising chickens under a Perdue contract for more than 20 years, Craig said the company’s labeling and promotional video about treating chickens humanely “couldn’t get any further from the truth.”

In order for you to know what’s really going on, Craig has taken a big risk by making these disclosures – documented in a video released by Compassion in World Farming. See for yourself.

Big Ag will stop at nothing to keep its secrets hidden, and the Campaign has witnessed severe retaliation against honest poultry farmers like Craig. We know it takes a community to fight for food system transparency and we won’t let Craig be silenced. With your help, the Campaign will fight to ensure his concerns are heard and heeded without corporate retaliation.

Tell the corporate giants that you know what’s really going on. Help show your support for Craig by spreading the message about what Perdue is doing. Use the links below to share his story with your friends and family.

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Sarah Damian is Communications Manager for the Food Integrity Campaign.


  1. Christine says:

    FYI…I contacted Perdue regarding this after seeing the video about Craig Watts posted by Compassion in World Farming
    and this is the reply I got:

    “Perdue Farms has thoroughly reviewed the video posted by Compassion in World Farming. We can assure that the conditions described in Mr. Watt’s poultry house do not reflect Perdue’s standards for how our chickens are raised, or the commitment of the many farm families who share in our commitment to responsible animal husbandry. It is clear from the video that the farmer is not following our guidelines.

    We take seriously any allegations of mistreatment or poor conditions on the farms raising our chickens. We submitted the video to the Center for Food Integrity’s independent Animal Care Review panel. Their review confirms that the video does not portray a properly managed poultry house. We have dispatched a team of poultry welfare experts to visit this farm and assure the wellbeing of the flocks, and will continue our investigation into the conditions shown in the video.

    Kindest regards,

    Mary Beth James
    Consumer Relations

  2. Carla Cicchi says:

    No animal deserves to be mistreated in any manner for any reason. It is a well-known sad fact that all animals used for food, clothing, or in research suffer terribly. Perdue and all other companies that exploit and abuse animals can make their money by being humane from beginning to end, but instead they choose to allow severe and unnecessary abuse to occur.Report

  3. Carla Cicchi says:

    My comment is above. What more do I need to do?Report

  4. jason says:

    How do you mean that all animals used for food suffer terribly? Across the board? Universally? That just doesn’t make sense. 

    I grow my own food (both meat and veggies) and the standards of life and death of my animals is higher than the majority of *people* on this planet. There is zero suffering, an elated and full life, followed by an instantaneous and unknowing death.  Perdue could do better, I agree. Much, much better. But to demonize all meat producers leaves no path to seeing what a better future could be.Report

  5. Amanda Hitt - FIC Director says:

    It’s clear from Perdue’s response that the company is just trying to discredit and silence the messenger. With regard to Christine’s comment, I just want to say that Craig Watts has never had a bad evaluation of his flock. His care of the birds has always been exemplary under Perdue’s guidelines. Also, Perdue has done nothing to “protect” the birds. If Craig is so bad at tending to the birds (which he is not), you’d think Perdue would want to do something about it and “rescue” the birds – but they haven’t. Craig has been advocating for change for a long time and he has the records to prove it. We stand with Mr. Watts and it’s our absolute pleasure to work with him in his effort to reform this industry.Report

  6. Anna Engdahl says:

    I’m just wondering why it took him 20 years to tell the truth. Did he lose his contract? He was the one taking care of those chickens.Report

  7. Amanda Hitt - FIC Director says:

    Mr. Watts has continuously voiced his objections and concerns through the years. The revelations aren’t new, but the video proof of what he was voicing concerns about is.Report

  8. Ellen O'Connor says:

    Perdue, you and your colleagues in Big Ag need to stop assuming that your fellow citizens are ignorant of the horrors and unnecessary cruelty used to “grow” chickens. You have gotten the message that many people care about animal, about the food supply. For the sake of honesty, the planet, and a decent food supply please begin to honor agriculture and support small farmers who can teach you to change your standards, so that the chickens you raise can have a decent life and a decent death and the chicken eaten in this country is clean and not drenched in antibiotics, and stress, and fecal matter.Report

  9. willie smith says:

    boycott perdue.
    lets take government back from corporations and the politicians they buy.Report

  10. Christine says:

    I should have noted that when I posted the reply I got from Perdue, it was with the intention of exposing how ridiculous their claims are; in my opinion, they are severely bending the truth, if not blatantly lying.

    Perdue can be contacted through this link; please contact them to let them know what you think. They need to hear from consumers and to know that we demand better. Thanks!

  11. Sherry Bogan says:

    Willie Smith, you nailed it! Big Ag buys their pass to do whatever they want from politicians who have no spine and sell out to the highest bidder. Their is no concern for the consumer, the workers who produce/process our food, and certainly none for the animals. It’s a win win for corporations and politicians, and a gigantic screw you to the consumer. *Carla Cicchu-I also agree with you 100%. That’s why I quit eating animals a long time ago. Do my best to purchase products that are cruelty free. And clothing, I refuse to wear anything w/any animal parts…shoes are a problem for me as I am somewhat handicapped and need good stable shoes, but I’m working towards being 100% vegan in every aspect of my life.Report

  12. RichWa says:

    Perdue is a major source of fertilizer for use by USDA Organic certified factory farming operations. Here’s their website:
    Arsenic, pharmaceuticals, other substances prohibited for use on UDSA Organic farms — the human beings that control Perdue care little more about our well-being than they do the chickens.Report

  13. Michelle says:

    Obviously Perdue is just going to sell out this farmer and deny deny. Everyone knows Perdue knows exactly what these farmers under contract with them are doing. Perdue is the reason they are operating this way in the fat place. It’s all lies and they just blame the farmer who tells the truth.Report

  14. stewart parks says:

    For whatever reason, I am glad that Craig, a farmer for many years came through. We do not even have a clue what animals suffer before they are killed. Big corporations are ruled by the $$$$ and are severely deficit in empathy for the pain and suffering animals endure just to feed our insatiable appetite for meat. We are all guilty of contributing to the slaughter of animals. The more meat we eat, the more $$$ signs these corporations see.
    They remind me of sharks in a feeding frenzy. There is no need to produce meats in these quantities. I have seen with my own 2 eyes how much meat is thrown into the dumpsters behind grocery stores. So many animals lives are taken in vain. Their meat fed no one. We are a wasteful lot of people. . One problem of the slaughter business begets another and another. There is not one answer, but there is a remedy for abuse of these animals before they are slaughtered. We have to continue to sign,spread the word and fight for laws to protect all animal life from human abuse. I have to believe in my heart that there are millions of more people who are of an empathetic nature,…who need to know. Shout it out for those who have no voice.Report

  15. Michelle says:

    It’s very true we are wasteful and over producing. We have a big obesity epidemic and that is one problem that fixing will go hand in hand with the amount of meat we are producing. Cheap junk food fuels the need to produce as much as possible for as cheap as possible. It’s a bad cycle. No one should be eating junk food/fast food in the first place. There is even evidence of the dairy industry over producing and killing off a mass amount of dairy cows over a period of years to drive supply down and demand up. I can’t remember all the details but if you look it up you can see what they’ve done and tried to cover up. This is completely unacceptable, these are living animals. Those lives just created and thrown away with no purpose.Report

  16. Phil says:

    If you want to know how our food is raised, by corporate conglomerates, just watch Food Inc. Yhis does not apply to family farms with many generations of good ethics, but of the Conglomerates which are interested only in the bottom line! Money.
    They are the ones that are destroying our real farms with Factory like tactics which show no respect for animals and the employees they hire to produce them. The condition are a lot less than humane. Monsanto is the worse advocates for healthy foods. And Perdue is under their thumb. That’s how Perdue and Tyson do business, in order to stay in business. It is a cruel industry. We have the power to vote for better foods by researching and buying humanely raised meats and veggies, from local growers and reputable farms. Every time you go to the market to buy food, you have the power to put these people out of business or allow them to kill you with their garbage. GMOs and meats raised with GMOs are killing our children and us. We have the power to change this by recognizing which companies are owned by Monsanto, and the likes, and refusing to buy their product.Report

  17. Steve Lucas says:

    I am a consumer of chicken meat. After watching Mr Craig Watts on Fusion TV I have asked, strongly suggested, that she no longer purchase Purdue Farms chicken! If only I could do more.Report

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