KFC Cruelty - Protest Photo Essay
introduction | investigations | photo essay

For over three years
Animal Liberation Victoria have been conducting weekly demonstrations outside Melbourne's central KFC as part of the international KFC Cruelty campaign. ALV protestors have shown video of ALV's open rescues of meat chickens at KFC suppliers (which document KFC broiler babies being raised in horrific conditions), given out free 'mock' chicken to show that there are delicious and cruelty-free alternatives to KFC, and have distributed over a million leaflets, posters and postcards to KFC customers and passers by, many of whom have sworn off ever again eating the remains of tortured and crippled baby birds. Following is a regularly updated photo essay documenting ALV's ongoing KFC Cruelty demonstrations. If you would like to get involved in a KFC Cruelty protest or conduct your own, contact ALV in Australia or PETA elsewhere in the world.

Click on any photo below for larger version

Demo 136 - February 25, 2006

Demo 132 - January 28, 2006

KFC Cruelty protests continuing strong in 2006. Over a million leaflets, posters and postcards have been distributed since protests began in 2003

Demo 126 - December 10, 2005

Lindsay McDougall of Frenzal Rhomb and host of the Triple J Breakfast Show came along to help in the protest against KFC cruelty. Afterwards he came back to the ALV office to do an interview with Ward from ALV youth, which will be released on the ALV youth DVD in 2006.

Demo 112 - August 27, 2005

Spiderman helping protest against KFC's cruelty to animals

Demo 100 - June 4, 2005

To mark the 100th protest outside Melbourne's most central KFC store, ALV set up a free 'mock' chicken shop so that people could experience delicious alternatives to KFC, without causing unnecessary harm and death to animals. ALV's temporary 'mock' chicken shop was hugely successful, with hundreds sampling the delicious 'fake chicken for real animal lovers'. Two lettuce ladies handed out the free food (asking KFC to turn over a new leaf and stop abusing animals) while about 40 protesters handed out leaflets and talked to members of the public wanting more information.

Vision Van - May 6, 2005

ALV's beta "vision van", a mobile theatre featuring footage of animals being abused in factory farms and slaughterhouses, had a test run tonight outside of the Bourke Street KFC. Footage of abused and tortured chickens was shown outside the restaurant and many people were horrified to see first hand the suffering that is behind the chicken meat industry. When fully operational the vision van will be out on Melbourne's streets on a regular basis.

Demo 91 - April 2, 2005

Another passerby reads about KFC's cruelty to animals.

KFC National Conference Protest - February 15, 2005

ALV activists gatecrashed the plenary session of the KFC (Australia) National Conference and doused KFC executives, including CEO Roger Eaton, with fake blood (tomato sauce), in a protest against the company’s continuing cruelty to animals. The action occurred as 535 KFC Restaurant General Managers were making their way out of the session and shaking the hands of KFC management. After throwing the fake blood, the activists were immediately tackled by KFC staff, when management yelled ‘don’t wait for security, get them out of here now!’. The activists both called out 'KFC tortures baby birds, KFC Cruelty’ as they were led away.

ALV vice president Noah Hannibal (who threw the fake blood), later said in a media statement: 'KFC is behind enormous cruelty and suffering here in Australia. Our rescue teams have inspected, on numerous occasions, the sheds where KFC birds are 'grown' prior to their brutal slaughter. We consistently find sick, crippled, injured and weak birds dying from lack of care. The sheds are littered with rotting bodies, some very swollen and filled with pus. These corpses are being pecked and eaten by other birds in the shed, the air is foul and the litter is soaked and packed with the manure of 40,000 birds. We've protested every week at the Melbourne City KFC for two years and are determined to take our message to the top. KFC (YUM! Restaurants International) has sales in excess of one billion dollars in Australia. We will continue to put the pressure on KFC as long as this huge corporation continues to profit from the horrific suffering of animals.'

Demo 84 - February 12, 2005

Demo 83 - February 5, 2005

The person in this photos came out of the store shovelling chicken into his mouth and fronting in an abusive and belligerent manner. After one of the female protesters called him up on his behaviour he threw his drink over her and grabbed her in a headlock, clearly having no problem with abusing women. Another great reason for not eating at KFC.

Vietnam KFC Protest - November 21, 2004

While travelling through south east asia ALV's KFC cruelty campaigner helped organise a number of KFC Cruelty protests, this report came in from Ho Chi Minh City: "As we were making the pre protest media calls one journalist laughed in our face and said ‘Protests do not happen in Vietnam’. Despite this the protest went ahead and we set ourselves up in a cage outside one of Ho Chi Minh City’s busiest KFCs, holding signs which read “KFC tortures chickens”. A small number of photographers and reporters showed up and took photos for about twenty minutes. When they left we packed up the cage and were walking away when the KFC employees started trying to detain us. We kept walking but the police soon arrived and arrested Jason (who was carrying the cage). They didn’t notice me so I went off to make media calls. The press loved the story and articles about the American arrested in a communist country while protesting KFC ran all over the world. An hour into doing press calls I received a message from Jason saying that the police had worked out which hotel we were at and to get out of there as soon as possible. So I spent the rest of the time in Vietnam laying low, and when Jason was released after half a day we left Vietnam.

Thailand KFC Protest - November 12, 2004

While travelling through south east asia ALV's KFC cruelty campaigner helped organise a number of KFC Cruelty protests, this report came in from Bangkok: "We held a ‘why did the chicken cross the road?’ protest at the central Bangkok KFC. At these protests one of us gets decked up in a crippled chicken costume and hobbles across the road to the KFC, hoping the press show up. As it turned out when we got there we almost couldn’t cross the road due to the crush of photojournalists who showed up to cover the story. For around five minutes we were blocking Silom traffic as close to 20 photographers snapped away. The next morning almost every Thai newspaper had a big colour photo of the protest and the story had spread around the world on the international wires, all mentioning KFC’s cruelty to animals."

Malaysia KFC Protest - November 8, 2004

While travelling through south east asia ALV's KFC cruelty campaigner helped organise a number of KFC Cruelty protests, the first in Kuala Lumpur. This report came in from the road: Holding up signs that said ‘Meat is Toxic’ and ‘Eating Meat is Hazardous to your Health’ (referring to the recent avian flu outbreak) we stood outside the store for an hour distributing leaflets to passers by and speaking to the journalists who showed up. The police, carrying machine guns, arrived early and formed lines in front of the KFC doors. The chief of police kept approaching us and angrily saying we had to leave right now or we would be arrested, but we ignored him and nothing ever came of it except his face kept getting redder and redder. After the demo we went out with the local activists who were thrilled to meet so many other Malaysians who cared about animals, as we left the country they were busy planning the establishment of Malaysia’s first animal rights group.

Demo 70 - October 23, 2004

a line of protesters, a near empty kfc store, and an angry manager needing anger management.

Demo 63 - September 4, 2004

Protesters stood in front of the KFC doors with large posters depicting images of how KFC chickens are raised. Many customers were turned off their food seeing the images of cruelty and decomposing corpses being held up to the windows.

Demo 62 - August 28, 2004

the person in the third photo approached the kfc cruelty protest and in an attempt to harrass the protestors lifted up his shirt and started rubbing his half eaten piece of chicken into his chest. the fact that this individual eats kfc is perhaps one of the best arguments for not eating at kfc. we have placed his photo next to a photo of another good reason for not eating at kfc, one of the scores of dead and decomposing birds that rescue teams repeatedly find on the ground in kfc supplier sheds.

Demo 53 - June 26, 2004

At this protest two council compliance officers approached and said that since ALV leaflets did not contain the words 'do not litter' we could be fined $200 for each leaflet they picked up off the ground. they gave us the option of calling the demo off or being fined. We have been doing these protests for over a year and have had no trouble so far. T
he council compliance officers said they had received complaints from local traders about the number of KFC leaflets on the ground, which was surprising because after the protests we walk up the street and usually only see about 2-3 discarded leaflets which we always pick up. One of the compliance officers, Gerry Francis, told us that council do not usually concern themselves with political or religious leaflets but they are taking legal advice on what they can do to get us stopped. After we told him we would have 'do not litter' stamps on all the leaflets for the demo next week he told us that if council didn't get us on that they would get us on other compliance issues (the example he gave was two people standing next to each other while handing out leaflets).

After the protest we were informed by our contacted inside the store who informed us that after the demonstration the previous week, KFC management had filmed their friends dropping leaflets on the street and then submitted this tape in a complaint to council. ALV have been conducting KFC cruelty demonstrations at this location for over a year, now after what appears to be a dishonest, manufactured complaint from KFC (which would show how desperate they are and how much our protests are hurting them) council are attempting to remove our freedom to protest. If council think they can remove our freedom to speak up for the rights of animals they have another thing coming. We will not give up our democratic right to protest, nor will we give up on the millions upon millions of birds tortured and killed by KFC.

Demo 50 - June 5, 2004

ALV held their 50th KFC protest against KFC this Saturday, handing out over 3,000 leaflets to passers by. The day was a great success with many people telling the protesters they would never eat at KFC ever again. T
he protest happened the day before the 60th anniversary of D-Day and ALV member Mervyn Langford, a World War II veteran who was part of the Normandy invasion, took part in the protest. Merv said 'I have always been taught to speak out against wrongdoing whenever I witness it and that's why I'm here today to speak up for these defenceless animals. I don't like to think about my time in Normandy sixty years ago, and I cannot think of a better way to spend the 60th Anniversary of D-Day than to speak out against the horrible suffering these animals endure every day.'

Demo 48 - May 22, 2004

For some reason KFC thought it would be a good idea to hand out free chicken on the street during ALV's protest. KFC management quickly learned otherwise. T
he second photo shows the owner of the KFC store (who clearly looks as though he eats there way too often) asking police to stop us taking photos of him.

Demo 45 - may 1, 2004

As the May Day march passed by ALV's KFC cruelty protest the leader of the May Day march started chanting 'KFC leave the chickens alone!' into four giant bullhorns mounted on a ute. For several minutes all the May Day marchers passing by kept up the chant.

Demo 42 - April 10, 2004

Regular KFC cruelty photographer Noah Hannibal was travelling during this week's demonstration but sent in these photos of a broken window at the central Beijing KFC.

Demo 41 - April 3, 2004

KFC need to invest in some anger management training for their employees. This KFC manager (third photo) came out swearing and ranting.

Demo 38 - March 13, 2004

A portable television showing images of cruelty at KFC suppliers turned many KFC customers off their meal and convinced many passers by not to eat at KFC.

Demo 34 - February 14, 2004

The second photograph shows a sign that appeared on the KFC window one morning a few days before the protest.

Demo 30 - January 17, 2004

KFC protest number 30 saw a huge number of activists show up to protest KFC cruelty. Visiting Irish photographer Sean Dwyer came along to document the event (first three photos).

Demo 29 - January 10, 2004

The first Melbourne KFC Cruelty demo of the new year saw a KFC manager briefly join the protest. The second photo shows some of the literature that was plastered across the KFC store.

Demo 28 - January 03, 2004

ALV members travelled to Geelong to join other animal rights activist in the first KFC Cruelty protest of the year. The protest received excellent local media coverage and educated hundreds of Geelong residents about the cruelties of KFC.

Demo 27 - December 20, 2003

The security guard hired by KFC ineffectively tries to move protesters along.

Demo 26 - December 13, 2003

Jason Baker, a director of PETA, in Melbourne to discuss tactics for the 2004 KFC Cruelty campaign.

Demo 25 - December 06, 2003

The Bourke Street KFC was plastered with KFC Cruelty stickers during this demo.

Demo 23 - November 22, 2003

Demo 22 - November 15, 2003

A young protester shows the few remaining customers inside this KFC store where their meal came from. ALV members informing the two security guards outside KFC that they are helping a company that tortures and cripples baby animals.

Demo 20 - October 25, 2003

This demo started peacefully enough but then someone who apparently didn't like anti-KFC protesters came up and started harrassing demonstrators. We thought he had left but then he came up beside Noah on the megaphone and out of nowhere violently punched him in the side of the head. At this point a group of people, many of them not connected with the demo, chased after him and held him down so that the above photo could be taken. Police were called and he was taken away.
After the police had gone Noah picked up the megaphone again and continued to inform the public about how KFC inflicts lives of constant misery upon baby chickens. We will not stop speaking out for those who have no voice.

Demo 19 - October 18, 2003

KFC have now hired security for the ALV protests. The first photo shows a security guard looking a little insecure. In the second photo police ask protesters to stop showing KFC patrons signs depicting the truth about how KFC abuses chickens. When told that it was not illegal to hold a sign up to the shop window, the protesters politely refused to stop.

Demo 18 - October 15, 2003

Popular US band Goldfinger, touring Australia as part of the Livid festival, joined in the ALV protests against KFC Cruelty. Frontman John Feldmann grabbed a megaphone and passionately informed the passing lunchtime crowds about how KFC serve up the remains of tortured and crippled baby birds. The protest was swelled by a large number of Goldfinger fans and police came several times during the demo to see what was going on, but as the last photo shows, John and other members of the band were not deterred and continued to keep up the pressure on KFC to stop torturing animals. Later that night John came out after the Goldfinger show and signed all his autographs for fans on KFC Cruelty leaflets. (A few days later the lads from Goldfinger attended more protests against KFC up in Queensland)

Demo 17 - October 13, 2003

This weekday protest attracted a lot of attention and the second photo shows some of the many schoolchildren who joined in the protest against KFC. The third photo shows the KFC manager speaking with some protesters who were informing customers about KFC cruelty.

Demo 15 - October 04, 2003

During our third "global week of action" demo against KFC, store management held a "counter protest", sending two employees out to distribute KFC discount cards to passers-by. Protesters followed them around handing out KFC cruelty leaflets to everyone who received a discount card and held "Animal Cruelty" placards over their heads. The third photo shows the message greeting KFC customers from inside the store.

Demo 14 - September 27, 2003

ALV activists kicking of the worldwide KFC week of action. 30 protesters handed out thousands of leaflets, spoke to hundreds of passers by about KFC cruelty to animals, and used a megaphone to inform KFC customers that they were being served the remains of tortured, crippled baby birds. The second photo shows the KFC store nearly empty twenty minutes into our demonstration (it was close to full capacity before the demo started). The third shows ALV media spokeperson Natasha doing a radio interview for the KFC worldwide week of action.

Demo 12 - September 13, 2003

The near emptiness of the normally bustling KFC in the background of the second photo shows the effectiveness of these demos. After reading our leaflets, the youngsters in the third photo went inside to protest to KFC management

Demo 9 - August 23, 2003

The police were repeated called by KFC management to this protest after receiving reports that ALV activists were linking arms and preventing customers from entering the building. These photos show the KFC manager running out to remove the protestors.

Demo 8 - August 16, 2003

This KFC manager ran out and told the protestors to get away from the doors and stop taking photos. The third photo is a close-up of the KFC manager's hand.

Demo 7 - August 09, 2003

An incident at this demonstration has convinced us that it is now more important than ever to educate the public about the cruelties involved in meat production. A group of teenagers approached the demonstration with live baby chickens in boxes, they aggressively dropped the boxes and kicked them along the ground, telling us that unless we payed them $10 for each baby chicken they would rip their wings off and drown them. At this point ALV member Noah grabbed the hens from the teenagers and the birds were taken to safety. Ten minutes later police came and arrested Noah for theft (this was ridiculous considering that the 'theft' involved stopping violent teenagers from abusing baby birds). The charges have since been dropped and ALV is currently pressing to have charges of cruelty to animals laid against the youths (one of the baby birds was later vomiting blood). The photos show ALV member Natasha cradling one of the rescued hens.

Demo 4 - July 25, 2003

The Geelong KFC demo was very 'colorful' and received a photo and write-up in Saturday's Geelong Advertiser. 24 activists from ALV, BOAR and Geelong joined forces to stand up for 'broiler' chickens. Patty, Jason and Brad ran red paint (water based) down the windows and front door of KFC. Several police attended, but no arrests. Chrissie Hinde (The Pretenders) and Peta's Ingrid Newkirk did a similar 'bloody' protest in Paris. Afterwards the protestors and a crippled broiler chicken walked down the street to the KFC head office and had an impromptu second demo after being locked out.

James Cromwell signs on to KFC Cruelty campaign - June 05, 2003

US actor and star of "Babe" James Cromwell was recently in Melbourne filming Salem’s Lot. The endearing farmer Hogget from Babe is a committed vegan and he took time off his filming schedule to help out with our campaign to stop KFC’s ongoing cruelty to chickens.

Demo 1 - March 26, 2003

The first Australian KFC Cruelty protest

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