“Boning” Severely Restricts Male Birds’ Ability to Eat
Wayne Farms, the nation’s sixth largest poultry producer, has stated that it will end the brutal practice of stabbing a dull plastic “bone” through the sensitive nostrils of young male breeder chickens.
The painful practice, commonly known as “boning,” severely restricts male birds’ ability to eat in order to keep them from growing too large to use as breeders. This is because “broiler” chickens are selectively bred to grow at an abnormal and unhealthy rate so that they can be slaughtered sooner (see our Life of a Chicken video to learn more about the sad, short lives of chickens in factory farms). “Boning” was documented for the first time on hidden camera earlier this year by an Animal Outlook investigator who worked inside broiler breeder factory farms contracted by Tyson Foods.
After viewing our investigative footage, Tyson said it would immediately end the practice companywide. Urged to follow suit, earlier this month Perdue announced that it will phase out “boning” in all its male breeder bird flocks by January 1, 2017.
In response to our inquiry about “boning,” Wayne Farms stated on Sept. 21, 2016: “We have now terminated the practice completely.”
We’re encouraged by these decisions to eliminate the use of nose “bones” — it’s an important step in the right direction. However, we hope that Wayne Farms will take the next step and eliminate the underlying issue: Breeder chickens are perpetually starved, in part by using these “bones,” in order to curb health defects caused by unnaturally fast growth.
Based in Oakwood, Georgia, Wayne Farms is a supplier of ConAgra Foods, Nestlé, Campbell Soup, Healthy Choice and restaurant chains Chick-fil-A, Jack in the Box and Applebee’s.