Write to the government | Viva!

Write to the government

Viva! believes that the factory farming of ducks is morally reprehensible. Please send this letter (or compose your own) to:

Write: The Secretary of State for Environment, Food & Rural Affairs 
DEFRA, Nobel House, 17 Smith Square, London SW1P 3JR

​Email: defra.helpline@defra.gsi.gov.uk

Your name:

"Dear Minister

I’m appalled to discover that ducks are factory farmed for meat in Britain.

Farmed ducks retain many of the biological characteristics of their wild ancestors and yet they are kept in their thousands in sheds.

According to the Council of Europe legislation (European Convention for the Protection of Animals Kept for Farming Purposes), ratified by the UK government in June 1999, selective breeding for meat production has meant that ducks ‘may be unable to fly, have difficulty in walking and are subject to leg disorders’. In crowded farm conditions, some birds are knocked over onto their backs and are unable to right themselves. With around 10,000 birds in one shed it is impossible to check on every bird. Sick or injured birds are invariably left to die.

The Convention states that ducks are "largely aquatic" and that "all breeds retain many biological characteristics of their wild ancestors" - and that farmed ducks should be “allowed the fulfilment of essential biological requirements, in particular in respect of water...” Clearly, UK duck farms are breaking the law. For example, these aquatic birds will never have the opportunity to swim in water. This deprivation is morally reprehensible and I’m disgusted it is allowed.

At slaughter, ducks are hung upside down on a conveyor belt before having their heads dipped in an electrical waterbath. The Scientific Veterinary Committee of the EU are concerned that many ducks are not properly stunned and may therefore be knifed whilst fully conscious.

I would hope that this government would be against this cruelty and urge you to ensure that it ends. I look forward to your response.

Yours sincerely"

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