Tyson Foods describes itself as “an international leader in the food industry, especially chicken, beef, and pork.” More accurately stated, Tyson leads the world in confining, abusing, and killing chickens, cows, and pigs, contributes to air and water pollution and climate change, and causes a wide range of health problems that also increase everyone’s health care costs.
Tyson goes to great lengths to conceal the true nature of their business. Their website is a virtual propaganda manual. If you’re looking for ideas for misleading photos and disingenuous policy statements, it’s treasure trove. Here’s a taste.
The animals may disagree with Tyson’s assurance that their employees treat animals “responsibly and with respect.” Tyson states they are “the stewards of the animals” they breed in confinement, abuse, and needlessly kill. In fact, they tout that position as one of their core values. It appears as if Tyson is congratulating themselves on the outstanding work they do with animals. If we didn’t know otherwise, we might confuse them for a farm sanctuary.
Tyson also states that everything they do is “to ensure the needs of our animals are met.” If an animal needs to be caged, beaten, transported, scalded, and slaughtered, they’re meeting their needs. Otherwise, it’s torture. Sadly, our culture has become so numb to the suffering of animals that a company like Tyson can market itself as normal and acceptable when in reality it’s a horror show.
I recently submitted a request to Tyson CEO Tom Hayes for an interview. The questions may appear discourteous until you remember that Hayes oversees the gruesome deprivation and killing of billions of animals.
1. When you’re on a factory floor and you smell the blood, hear the screams, and see the fear in animals’ eyes, what goes through your mind?
2. Did anyone ever teach you empathy when you were growing up? For example, were you ever taught not to throw rocks at a squirrel or pull a dog’s tail because they feel pain? (If yes, why don’t you extend that empathy to farm animals? If not, have you ever considered taking steps to learn how to empathize with animals?)
3. Have you ever thought adopting a plant-based diet? (If not, what are the reasons you eat animals?)
4. When you watch this video, does it bother you that your company is destroying the planet that these animals need to survive? What is the difference between these animals and the animals you kill in your slaughterhouses?
5. Why did Tyson decide to invest in Beyond Meat? Do you plan on additional investments in plant-based meat companies?
6. You stated that the future of animal agriculture is likely meatless. Will Tyson consider creating plant-based products?
7. What do you think of animal advocates who oppose animal agriculture?
8. Why did you choose animal agriculture as a career given that it’s cruel and environmentally unsustainable and negatively impacts people’s health?
9. If you’re comfortable with Tyson’s working conditions and treatment of animals, would you agree to allow live cameras in all of your slaughterhouses so your customers can watch?
10. Do you agree with Ag Gag laws? Why or why not?