KUALA LUMPUR — TIRED of accusations of badly treating its livestock, KFC Malaysia today revealed that the company has revamped all its chicken farms, far exceeding international standards.
Its managing director Jamaludin Mohammed Ali told a packed press conference today that the chickens are now being housed at facilities rated no less than five stars, fitting their new status as ‘brand ambassadors’.
“We realise that today’s society doesn’t like seeing animals being treated badly, and we fully understand that. While we don’t think putting them up in our regular chicken farms, which are already very hygienic and spacious, is wrong, we must respect the public opinion,” he said.
“Hence, the chickens’ new accommodation will be suites complete with attached jacuzzis and walk-in closets.”
Jamaludin added that there would be 450 double-storey villas, with each villa housing 2 suites, manned by 3 staff including a butler to cater to all the chickens’ needs.
“As KFC’s brand ambassadors, they deserve only the best treatment, before being slaughtered, defeathered, cut and sent to our 480 outlets across the country.
“I can’t think of a better way to live than getting a Balinese massage, a facial treatment and spending some time in the sauna. It’s all top-class treatment, using only authentic and imported ingredients to pamper the discerning fowl,” enthused Jamaludin. “And at the end of the day, our customers get the best quality chicken, in line with our ‘Finger Lickin’ Good’ mantra.”
An unnamed spokesperson for People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals (PETA), when contacted, said that she would not comment on the latest development, until the organisation has had a chance to study it in detail. “Of course, we welcome any effort by KFC to treat its livestock better,” she said. “However, we’re still waiting for the company’s response to our recommendation that KFC does not use any animal in their product, so we’re not too optimistic about their move.”
Jamaludin disclosed that the company’s move to better treat its chickens will affect the bottom line.
“We would be spending close to billion ringgit building the new facilities, so naturally, our finances would be hit,” he said. “While we would take the brunt of the expenditure, unfortunately, we’ll have to transfer some of the cost to the customer, albeit only minimally.
“For example, the price for a Snack Plate meal (consisting 2 pieces of chicken, two side dishes of coleslaw and mashed potatoes, and a fizzy drink) would be increased marginally to RM249.90 per meal, and a Zinger burger would be priced at RM79.90,” he said. He added that the new prices for the full menu would be announced in a few days.
KFC’s traditional rivals, McDonald’s and Burger King, when contacted, refused to comment. Industry insiders however, disclosed that the two companies are in the midst of coming out with equally eco-friendly measures to counter KFC’s move, including turning Ronald McDonald into a vegetarian.
A spokesperson for Nando’s, however, said that they may be experimenting with going the opposite direction — treat the chickens so badly that they’d wish they were dead.