Did your chicken come from a house of horrors? If you eat at Arby's, the answer is probably yes. In addition to major companies such as Perdue Farms, Nestlé, General Mills, and Unilever, dozens of leading restaurant chains, including Burger King, Subway, Moe's Southwest Grill, Boston Market, Qdoba, Jack in the Box, Quiznos, Chipotle, Panera Bread, Starbucks, Shake Shack, Einstein Brothers Bagels, Ruby Tuesday, TGI Fridays, Auntie Anne's, Carvel, Cinnabon, McAlister's Deli, Schlotzsky's, Noodles & Company, Pret A Manger, and Le Pain Quotidien, have already publicly adopted meaningful chicken welfare policies that require standards established by GAP, the Global Animal Partnership. Arby's has yet to publicly ban its suppliers from packing chickens into dark, crowded warehouses where continual contact with soiled litter can cause extreme feather loss and painful sores on the chickens' bodies and feet. At the slaughterhouse, chickens are hung upside down by their feet, a painful process that makes breathing difficult as other organs compress the birds' lungs. This is inexcusable animal cruelty that no socially responsible company should support.

Tortured Chickens

Living in Darkness

Chickens are crammed together and kept in near darkness for their entire lives. Many will not see sunlight until the day they are killed.

Bred to Suffer

Chickens are artificially bred to grow so unnaturally fast they often suffer from crippling leg pain and organ failure.

Sitting in Waste

Birds spend most of their lives sitting in old litter soaked with feces and urine, resulting in painful sores and respiratory problems.

Killed While Conscious

At the end of their lives, chickens are violently shackled upside down and have their throats cut—all while fully conscious.

Explore the Hidden Lives of Chickens

Chickens are sensitive and intelligent animals with advanced cognitive abilities that rival those of dogs, cats, and even some primates. Studies show that chickens excel at complex mental tasks, can learn from watching each other, and are even able to pass down information from one generation to the next.

Chickens are very social animals who can form deep and meaningful friendships with other birds. Some birds are outgoing and gregarious, while others are more shy and reserved. But all chickens put family first, giving rise to the term “mother hen” to refer to particularly protective parents.

The communication skills of chickens are highly sophisticated and begin developing at an early age. Mother hens will cluck to their chicks while they are still in their eggs, and the unborn chicks will chirp back at them. Researchers know of at least 30 types of vocalizations that chickens make to mean very different things.

The best way for individual consumers to help end this cruelty is to leave animals off their plates.