SALISBURY, Md. - On the birthday of civil disobedience icon Mahatma Gandhi, more than a hundred demonstrations specifically protesting animal cruelty are happening around the world.
One happened right on the Eastern Shore at Perdue Farms, where dozens of Farm Animal Rights Movement, or FARM organizers stood at the gates of the business demanding them to shut their doors and move out.
Protestors say it's all apart of a coordinated, targeted series of demonstrations at slaughterhouses and other animal agriculture facilities around the world in observance of the 30th annual World Day for Farmed Animals.
WMDT spoke with one of the activists who say they want Perdue to go out of business.
"I'm not going to compare Perdue to drug dealers, but people could say, 'well what if they got rid of the drug dealers, you're gonna lose jobs,'" said Bryan Monell. "There's certain industries that belong in a civilized society. We don't think slaughtering billions of chickens is a worthwhile or honorable profession."
"Quite honestly, are we asking Perdue to go out of business? Yes, we'd like Perdue to go out of business. We'd like people to find different types of jobs. We'd like to bring in different industries to this community. There's no great way to slaughter chickens."
When asked about which specific industry he would like to see in Salisbury, Monell could not name an industry to replace the poultry industry for the local economy.
Perdue Farms released a statement in response to the above-interview and Wednesday's protest.
"Farm Animal Rights Movement (FARM) has a stated goal of ending the use of animals for food and actively promotes a vegan diet. While we obviously don't agree with them, we do respect their right to voice their opinions," said Julie DeYoung, a spokesperson for Perdue Farms.
"We are proud of the way our chickens are raised and processed. We recognize that our customers and consumers trust that our poultry products come from animals that have been raised in a healthy environment, treated with respect and humanely processed. That's why our birds are raised cage-free in temperature-controlled housing with fresh air ventilation, protected from the elements, disease and predators. They have constant access to food and water and room to move about freely.
"In addition, we have a rigorous Poultry Welfare Program, and our flock advisors work directly with our poultry farm partners to ensure the safety, health and comfort of our poultry, and they are supported by a highly trained team including board-certified veterinarians specializing in poultry.
"Our auditing process assures that our poultry has a comfortable environment and that humane Best Practices govern the production, transport and processing of poultry"