Are You Eating Frankenturkey On Bird Day?
Support the global pharmaceutical and agroscience industries. Buy an over bloated, genetically modified, chemical monstrosity for Thanksgiving! :(
Jim Hightower (There’s Nothing in the Middle of the Road but Yellow Stripes and Dead Armadillos, 1997) wrote …
“Ninety percent of the half-billion turkeys sold in the world each year are derived from only three breeding flocks that are maintained on secretive, highly guarded farms surrounded by chain-link fences. Owning these three flocks, and thus controlling the world market of breeding turkeys, are Merck & Co. (the pharmaceutical giant based in New Jersey), Booker PLC (the British food conglomerate), and British Petroleum (the world’s fourth-largest oil company). All three flocks are of the white breed, assuring such dominant commercial grower as ConAgra Inc. (owner of Butterball) that each and every one of their turkey chicks will uniformly develop those pumped-up breasts. But such genetic uniformity has its ugly side. Not only can these hapless birds not mate, they also are bred to be so heavy and are so disfigured that they can barely walk more than a few feet, and many cannot even stand on their own two drumsticks, so they spend their abbreviated lives mostly squatting in the sawdust of dimly lit turkey houses, jammed wingtip to wingtip with hundreds of their genetically altered siblings. This breed cannot survive on its own, so the birds must pass their entire existence in environmentally controlled buildings, where machinery automatically dispenses a steady ration of feed that is rich in artificial growth stimulants, but often denies them such basic minerals as iron. (To create ‘a whiter white meat,’ iron is eliminated from the diet because it imparts a healthy reddishness to turkey flesh and, well, this is not what the marketing department ordered.)”
Hybrid Turkeys used to be owned by British Petroleum, but was sold back to its managers in 1994.
British United Turkeys is owned by Merck. It was once owned by the Rockefeller family.
The “Butterball” trademark has been allegedly owned by ConAgra since 1990, but the corporate labyrinth of Butterball genetic monstrosities is deliberately kept labyrinthine to confound the public.
Jim Hightower also wrote (on Alternet) …
“Factory farm animals get an average of 30 times more antibiotics than people do — and, yes, the drugs can end up in the drumsticks your kids eat.”
Mark Fritz (“Turkey’s Story: A Fowl Tale of the Death of Diversity,” Associated Press, Nov. 19, 1995) wrote …
“Turkeys can live two decades, but few do; most die by age 2. Here’s how: Birds are taken off the truck and hung upside down on shackles. They then move down a conveyor through a bath of brine charged with electricity. Birds are stunned senseless, and pass groggily by a rotary blade that slits their throats. A fatality-control worker stands by to finish off the birds in case they survive.”
Butterball turkeys are debeaked without painkillers so they don’t injure one another in the overcrowded conditions.
The good news about Butterball turkeys is that most of them are gluten-free — guaranteed to have eaten no wheat, barley, rye, tritacale, spelt, or kamut.
Enjoy your gluten-free toxic brew of growth hormones, chemicals, and vaccines!