SPITTING FEATHERS PETITION:
Please help defeat the proposal to put a chicken factory alongside the village: Sign the petition online.
Birmingham-based 2 Sisters Foods is planning to build a 4,000 square metre (43,100 sq ft) chicken factory in an area of outstanding natural beauty, close to 2 Wiltshire villages, Sutton Veny and Longbridge Deverill. This will take the form of 4 sealed sheds containing 179,000 birds at any one time. The birds, trucked in from Lincolnshire as day old chicks, will be bred on in the sheds at a density of 17 birds per square metre, for up to 6 weeks. At this stage they will be transported to Cullompton in Devon for slaughter; the first day they see daylight will be the day they die. A total of 1.5 million birds will cycle through this industrial production unit per annum. Although legal these questionable techniques are at the very least distasteful; in this case they are destructive of rural communities too. The Environment Agency has stipulated that the sheds will need ventilation towers 24 ft (8 metres) in height, equipped with (noisy) high velocity fans running 24 hours a day, in order to evacuate the very high concentrations of ammonia generated by the chicken dung. This is in an attempt to force the plume of ammonia high enough into the atmosphere to allow for its dispersion. Nevertheless, prevailing winds will blow this toxic mix of gas, dust, bacteria and parasites over Sutton Veny, a village of 800 inhabitants containing a primary school and a nursing home. Under certain atmospheric conditions the pollutants can become trapped close to the ground and combine with dust to become highly injurious to health; particularly to children, older people and those with chest conditions such as asthma. The processes of bringing in the day old chicks, taking out the grown on birds and removing the faeces, soiled bedding and detritus will generate industrial levels of activity and over 5,700 lorry movements per annum through the villages. They will generate noxious smells across both villages particularly when the chicken dung is removed from the floors of the sheds on each slaughter day. Other injurious effects will be the industrial pollution of air and ground water, noise of fans, pumps, vehicles and plant. Heavy traffic from flat-bed and articulated lorries will generate risk and further noise and air pollution as they navigate narrow lanes, often at night and during quiet hours. There will be added danger to children, adults and animals on unlit roads that have neither pavements nor pedestrian or bicycle lanes. There will be loss of employment and closure of local businesses (eg: Sutton Veny’s well-established Horses First Racing stable will have to re-locate). The proposals represent industrial processing, not agriculture and there couldn’t be a worse place for a chicken factory. Putting industrial scale food production here brings no benefits to the community; the unit will be automated and employ one man. It will generate pollution, hazard and risk. It will destroy enterprise and employment, disrupt the lives of locals with noise and traffic and despoil an area of outstanding natural beauty. This is about the wellbeing and welfare of two rural communities as well as exposing the way these animals are being exploited for food. Please help us fight this ugly interloper and the corporate greed that motivates 2 Sisters Foods to profit at others’ expense.
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