Letter appears in the December 9-15, 2004 edition of TIME OUT NEW YORK (TONY)
[Regarding: “Ask an organic turkey farmer: How do you kill a turkey humanely?” Nov. 25-Dec. 1, 2004]
Rhetoric about “honor and respect” aside, severing a bird’s jugular veins without severing the two main arteries, the carotids, which supply the brain with most of its fresh blood, is inhumane. Poor neck cutting extends the time that it takes a bird to die. Worst is the severance of only one jugular vein, which can result in a bird’s retaining consciousness, while in severe pain, for as long as eight minutes.
Whether by religious or scientific standards, Peter McDonald’s method of killing turkeys is cruel and inhumane.
Karen Davis, President
United Poultry Concerns
[The following paragraph was omitted from the published letter]
While the Humane Methods of Slaughter Act has yet to cover birds – representing nine billion of the ten billion animals slaughtered for food each year in the U.S. – It defines ritual slaughtering requirements of the Jewish faith or any other religious faith as a “method of slaughter whereby the animal suffers a loss of consciousness by anemia of the brain caused by the simultaneous and instantaneous severance of the carotid arteries with a sharp instrument and handling in connection with such slaughtering” (CFR Title 7, Section 1902)].