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National Chicken Month: A Call to Eat?

A truly distasteful marketing ploy

A truly distasteful marketing ploy

Much as the way many chose to celebrate Cow Appreciation Day seemed counterintuitive, so does the promotion of September as National Chicken Month.

Unlike May 4, International Respect for Chickens Day, National Chicken Month is sponsored by the National Chicken Council and the U.S. Poultry & Egg Association and is nothing more than a marketing ploy to drive chicken sales. In addition to partnering with food retailers and urging magazine and newspaper editors to push chicken as the “ ‘center of the plate’ protein choice”—reaching “20 million readers nationwide”—the campaign targets consumers through direct mailings, a chicken recipe contest, and promotion of EatChicken.com, a chicken recipe database.

Unfortunately, these tactics are working: “Per capita consumption of poultry when the campaign began in 1989 was 59.3 pounds. Today that figure stands at an estimated 84.7 pounds per person.” If the horrors mapped out by United Poultry Concerns and Compassion Over Killing were common knowledge, I hope the opposite would be true.

Make September about the care, not the consumption, of chickens. Do your part by leafleting, staging feed-ins and persuading others to go vegan, holding viewings of COK’s documentary 45 Days: The Life and Death of a Broiler Chicken, and getting it aired wherever possible.

1 Comment

  1. Comment by

    frank language

    on #

    Well, just figure: for National Frozen Vegetable Month, what are you supposed to do: enshrine a package of Green Giant frozen peas in your freezer the entire month out of respect for it? Reminds me of an ad (I forget for which retailer) that begins: “Aren’t geese great?” and goes on to extol the virtues of a fat goose-down comforter with matching pillows. Yeah, geese sure are great; I bet some goose is really missing his feathers right now.

    For the overwhelming majority of the population, chicken is food–with feathers to put in your pillow. End of discussion.

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