Wednesday, July 15, 2009

Eye Opening Show - Jamie's Fowl Dinners

Last night I had some time and decided to watch a Jamie Oliver Special that I had previously recorded. I'm not even sure what channel it was on originally. I expected the usual - energetic Jamie (Check), informative Jamie (Check) and a little cooking (Check).

What I did not expect, however, was how graphic the show was going to be. In a nutshell, he invited guests from all walks of life to a dinner party starring eggs and chicken. Safe so far...but then....well, then it gets quite disturbing. He walks us through the life cycle of chickens bred to either lay eggs or be served up for Sunday Dinner(very different breeds, by the way)...chickens running free and those crammed into cages.

I won't go into the details, but let us say...I will never eat anything but free range chickens or eggs again. This site has photos of how chickens are or in cages. Apparently the program was aired back in 2007 originally, (some very interesting facts in the article) but it's just as hard-hitting and eye-opening today.

Jamie shares stats for Britain, but I'm guessing they are similar around the world. Here's an interview with Jamie about his call to action. And if you are intrigued but can't find the show on's a link to some video clips. I do warn you though, some of the clips and photos are disturbing.

I used to sit on the fence...sometimes buying free range, sometimes not,...after last night....I know I'd rather be paying a bit more and buying chicken less often but of better quality and higher standard of care at the source. What about you?

And remember, supporting local farmers and producers is always the best thing you can do.


Bellini Valli said...

I am all to aware of how chickens are treated. I try and buy organic whenever possible...but I do love chicken:D

Marty Brett said...

We saw your blog and were hoping that this might clarify things a little.

Canada’s chicken farmers are concerned that the re-broadcast of Jamie’s Fowl Dinners may risk creating some false impressions in the minds of Canadian consumers. We were hoping that we could provide some quick facts to ensure that the Canadian story is also told.

Chickens raised for meat in Canada are raised on family farms; the term ‘factory’ or ‘industrial’ farm does not apply. In fact, unlike in many other places in the world, well over 90% of Canada’s farms (regardless of type) are family-owned.

Canadian chickens that are raised for meat, also known as broilers, are “free-run” and “floor raised”, meaning that they are raised in clean, well-ventilated, climate-controlled barns, where they can roam freely. Chickens are also not given any hormones or steroids; their use in the chicken industry has been illegal since the 1960s.

Chicken Farmers of Canada has an Animal Care Program, designed to demonstrate to consumers the level of animal care on Canadian chicken farms. The program has been designed as an auditable program with annual audits. The program was designed in consultation with over 40 stakeholders representing all interested parties, from farmers to humane organizations to veterinarians. CFC received support for the implementation of the program from both the Canadian Federation of Humane Societies and the Canadian Veterinary Medical Association.

Canada's chicken farmers firmly believe that animals should be treated with care and we will continue to do our utmost to ensure that we are raising the quality chicken Canadians trust.

Please contact me if you have further questions or you can visit our website at '' or our blog at '' if you require more information.


Marty Brett
Senior Communications Officer
Chicken Farmers of Canada
1007- 350 Sparks Street
Ottawa, ON K1R 7S8
T: 613 566 5926

Ruth Daniels said...

Thanks for the information, Marty. Good to know that things are a little different here in Canada.