Moy Park fined for chicken suffering

Moy Park has been fined £7,500 after chickens were put into a scalding tank at a plant in Derbyshire before they had been properly killed.

The company admitted charges of allowing animals to suffer at the Ashbourne plant during a hearing before Ilkeston magistrates.

The court was told that a vet had noted that, due to machine failure, a number of birds were not having their carotid artery fully cut before they were put into the tank.

Defra prosecutor Amy Clements said: "Their necks had not been sufficiently cut and they had not bled as they should have. The carotid artery should be severed."

In mitigation, it was said that the number of chickens involved was small, machinery had now been upgraded and that the slaughterman responsible for the machinery had been disciplined.

After the case, company spokesman Gareth Jones said in a statement to local media: "Animal welfare has always been a major issue at Moy Park and we have led the way with that since the 1980s.

"We pleaded guilty and absolutely regret what happened. As a result, we have installed the very latest equipment to stop it happening again."

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