Above: Undercover video from www.McDonaldsCruelty.com.
After being caught on hidden camera allegedly beating chickens with spiked clubs, Thomas and Susan Blassingame of T & S Farm in Dukedom, Tennessee, pled guilty to one count each of animal cruelty in the Weakley County, Tennessee General Sessions Court. These convictions come after an undercover investigation by Mercy For Animals at T & S Farm documented the Blassingames reportedly beating and stabbing chickens, standing on the birds' heads while pulling their wings or bodies to break their necks, and throwing live birds into buckets to suffer and slowly die.
Thomas and Susan Blassingame were each sentenced by Judge Thomas L. Moore Jr. to pay fines of $25 and court costs.
At the time of MFA's investigation, T & S Farm was under contract with Tyson Foods to supply chicken for McDonald's Chicken McNuggets.
The following statement can be attributed to MFA's president, Nathan Runkle:
"These criminal cruelty convictions graphically illustrate the inhumane and illegal abuses that chickens are all too often subjected to at McDonald's Chicken McNuggets suppliers nationwide. Sadly, the fines levied against the Blassingames are a pathetic slap on the wrist, unlikely to deter future acts of violence against animals."
"Instead of allowing animal abuse to continue unchecked at its chicken suppliers, McDonald's must act immediately by implementing meaningful animal welfare policies to ensure that no more chickens are illegally tortured for its Chicken McNuggets."
"MFA is calling on both McDonald's and Tyson Foods to end selective breeding of birds for rapid growth and shift to slower-growing breeds of birds to prevent health problems related to accelerated growth. Birds should be provided with more space, clean litter, access to natural light, and environmental enrichments. And the live-shackle slaughter method should be replaced by less cruel systems that eliminate the horrific suffering caused by shackling, shocking, and slitting the throats of conscious animals."
"No company with morals should subject animals to this unspeakable suffering.
The farms contract with McDonalds has been dropped.
Gary Smith, Evolotus PR