A UK-based charity has become the first animal protection group in the world to use virtual reality technology to transport people inside intensive chicken factory farms and slaughterhouses.
Animal Equality, which has a base in London as well as in seven other countries, is taking the latest film in its ground-breaking ‘iAnimal’ seriesto 20 universities across Britain this term - including Reading University.
Students and staff will be able to experience life – and death – through the eyes of the world’s most abused animals by using a virtual reality headset. The virtual reality film will be shown in a bid to raise awareness of the cruel conditions billions of factory farmed chickens endure across the globe.
The film will be shown on Tuesday 14th and Wednesday 15th March in the Reading University Students’ Union from 10am to 5pm.
iAnimal uses cutting-edge virtual reality technology to give viewers an immersive look at the lifecycle of factory farmed animals from birth to death. This latest project features footage filmed by 13 investigators in six countries including a chicken farm in Devon, UK, which was filmed in April 2016. It is narrated by Amanda Abbington, star of Sherlock and Mr Selfridge.“This is so horrible, it’s just awful. How can you treat any living thing with such a lack of respect and disregard? People need to be aware, and they’re not.” said Amanda Abbington, who was moved to tears after experiencing iAnimal.She added: “You should watch this before you eat meat, because I don’t think you would eat it.”
Dr Toni Shephard, UK Executive Director of Animal Equality, said: “Virtual reality opens up worlds that used to be hidden from us and there is nothing more secretive than the way animals are reared and killed for food. Animal Equality believes people have the right to know what happens in modern farms and slaughterhouses so that consumers can make informed decisions about the food they buy. Now, through our cutting-edge iAnimal project, we can open up these secretive worlds and allow everyone to experience first-hand how farmed animals live and die.”
Dr Shephard added: “In all of the countries we filmed in, and most of the western world, the majority of chickens killed for meat are intensively reared inside gigantic, filthy factory farm sheds where the air is thick with ammonia from the droppings of 50,000 birds - or more.
“Paul McCartney once famously said ‘If slaughterhouses had glass walls, we would all be vegetarians’… but of course they don’t, and most people remain unaware of the lives and deaths of animals bred for food.”
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Robbie is a film maker, journalist and co-founder of plantbasednews.org. He also co-created the vegan film SWINE. In his spare time he works as a campaigner teaching people about the benefits of the vegan lifestyle.
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