Forget 18 Million Retweets! More Than 18 Million Chickens Are Killed—Every. Single. Day.

You’ve probably seen it online or in the news: Carl Wilkerson, a 16-year-old from Nevada, tweeted at Wendy’s, asking how many retweets he needed to get free chicken nuggets for a year.

The fast-food giant quickly replied with 18 million, and the rest is social media history. Wilkerson has since been on many late-night shows and major media segments.

Right now, Wilkerson has over 3 million retweets, but he’s coming close to beating the record set by Ellen DeGeneres‏ for most retweeted tweet of all time.

But Wilkerson is nowhere near the number of chickens slaughtered each day in the United States.

The unfortunate truth is that over 24 million chickens are slaughtered each day in the U.S., according the USDA.

Chickens comprise 95 percent of land animals raised and killed for food in the U.S. They also lead some of the most miserable lives of all farmed animals.

Wendy’s allows its suppliers to abuse chickens in ways other chains have banned for being too cruel. Raised in near total darkness, many birds are bred to grow so large, so fast, they collapse under their own weight. They often suffer from constant leg pain so severe they can’t stand and spend almost all their time sitting in their own waste. At slaughter, they are shackled upside down and shocked with electricity before their throats are cut open—all while fully conscious. Many are even scalded alive.

You won’t believe how Wendy’s gets its chicken. Watch.

Wilkerson probably doesn’t know how cruelly chickens are treated on factory farms. But Wendy’s does. Mercy For Animals has asked Wendy’s to join companies like Chipotle, Starbucks, and Pret A Manger by committing to improved chicken welfare.

Join us in urging Wendy’s leaders to adopt the same basic animal welfare commitments for chickens as its competitors have. Click here to sign our petition.

The best way to help stop the torment animals endure on factory farms is simply to leave animals off your plate. Click here to order your FREE Vegetarian Starter Guide today!