Chickens Suffocated and Cooked Alive with Ventilation Shutdown

Chickens Suffocated and Cooked Alive with Ventilation Shutdown

Imagine being trapped inside a cavernous warehouse, all air cut off, all doors and windows sealed, all fans shut down, the temperature rising to such intense levels, that eventually you perish from hyperthermia. But you don't die quickly. It's only after hours of painful suffocation and being baked alive, hours of flailing your body in desperation against the metal sides of your cage, that you are finally released from your suffering. That is ventilation shutdown (VSD), which is an incredibly cruel way used to kill farmed animals en masse. 

VSD+ uses added heat and/or carbon dioxide to speed up the process. This horrifically cruel method is being used to kill hundreds of thousands of chickens on factory farms if not more.

The American Veterinary Medical Association’s (AVMA) “depopulation” guidelines approved the use of VSD+ for chickens only in “constrained circumstances” such as an outbreak of a zoonotic disease, but this drastic method was to be used only as a last resort. During Covid, slaughterhouses were cutting back on the number of animals slaughtered, which caused a “surplus” of animals on farms. The farms were anxious to promptly get rid of “excess” chickens so they used the slaughterhouse reductions as an excuse to expedite the process of killing hundreds of thousands of chickens in a massive depopulation using VSD. Even after the threat of a viral outbreak, chicken-raising facilities are not cutting back on using this excruciating and prolonged method of killing. Instead, unbelievably, they are increasing its use!

The fact is that VSD is not quick and certainly not painless. Many veterinarians, along with nonprofits are calling for the AVMA to add the words “not recommended” to its guidelines regarding VSD for the mass killing of chickens and pigs. There are more humane methods available, but producers are not willing to pay the added costs.

The simplest way to not endorse this kind of suffering is to not eat chickens or pigs, or, better yet, any animals. That will not only allow more chickens to breathe freely, but it will help to expand your world of dining options. Try our free Vegan Starter Kit for many delicious ways to eat more cruelty-free.

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