Vegetarians International Voice for Animals

Bristol shoppers to "feather" turkey in veggie Christmas pledge

Photocall: Friday, December 19, 2008 12 noon near Tesco on Union Street, Bristol

Release date: 
Thursday, December 18, 2008

SHOPPERS in Bristol will be encouraged to go veggie this Christmas by adding their names to a giant turkey pledge on Wednesday in the city centre. People will be able to sign special paper feathers, which will be placed on a large visual display, as part of the seasonal campaign by Bristol-based animal group Viva!. Free leaflets and information on going veggie and what Viva! call a compassionate Christmas, will also be available. Viva! are calling on consumers to help bring Peace to ALL by not eating turkey or any other animal this Christmas. In the wild, turkeys can live as long as 10 years, spend their lives roosting in trees and can fly at speeds of up to 50 mph. However, over 90 per cent of turkeys bred for meat consumption are factory farmed and killed at only a few weeks old. Zephie Begolo, Viva! campaigner, says: "We will be asking shoppers to go veggie this Christmas, as a gesture of goodwill to all creatures. The short life of a factory farmed turkey is a miserable one. They live in cramped filthy conditions, in barren sheds and suffer violent deaths " an image people don't usual associate with the festive season. We are asking consumers to spare a thought for the life their Christmas dinner endured and have a compassionate Christmas this year.' Factory farmed turkeys live in sheds of up to 25,000 birds. They are typically bred to grow fat, fast often resulting in injuries, such as lameness and sometimes their bodies cannot support them. Tens of thousands of turkeys die each year as a result of factory farm conditions and from being unable to reach food and water points. The intensive nature of the farming system can also lead to frustrated behaviour such as feather pecking and cannibalism. They go to slaughter between nine and 12 weeks and are typically stunned in an electrocuted water bath before their throats are slit. For more information about Viva!'s Peace to ALL campaign or on going veggie, visit www.viva.org.uk or email info@viva.org.uk or call 0117 944 1000 to request a free Go Veggie pack. ENDS For more information, contact Viva! press officer Helen Rossiter by emailing press@viva.org.uk or Zephie Begolo by emailing zephie@viva.org.uk or calling 0117 944 1000. Images from the photo call will be available upon request. Notes to Editors For more information about turkeys, please see Viva!'s fact sheet http://www.viva.org.uk/campaigns/turkeys/index.htm.