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The brutal life of a meat chicken

By Stephanie Brown      

Conditions on most chicken farms are sparse. There is abundant food and water and long hours of artificial light to encourage eating, but usually no natural light.  

Life can be harsh for Canadian chickens destined to be meat today. Most birds live just 32 to 34 days–the result of extreme genetics, which force them to quickly reach slaughter weight.  The birds are so young they chirp like chicks and are not fully feathered, but have a huge breast muscle. Such rapid growth is hard on birds, causing footpad lesions and lameness.

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