Turkeys give thanks for Moby

By David Usborne
Saturday 23 November 2002 01:00

Feathers are flying between the poultry industry in the United States and the animal rights group Peta – People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals – which has recruited Moby, the dance music star, to record a telephone hotline urging Americans to eschew their traditional Thanksgiving ritual of putting turkey on their tables.

Moby, who is a strict vegetarian, made the recording to counter a similar free phoneline set up every year by Butterball, which markets one of the most popular turkey brands in the US. The Butterball telephone line offers Americans tips on how best to prepare and cook the Thanksgiving roast. Thanksgiving is next Thursday.

"Hello, this is Moby," the Peta-sponsored recording begins. "Please join me in calling the Butterball people to let them know there is no proper way to kill and cook these beautiful birds." Americans can find the unusual entreaty by calling 1-800-VEG-FOOD.

But now a group that represents the food industry, the Center for Consumer Freedom, is striking back with adverts that will appear in magazines such asTime and Variety.

"The Center for Consumer Freedom believes that Americans should not let animal rights activists ruin Thanksgiving dinner. So we're recommending that consumers who are tired of unsolicited dietary advice from extremists call Peta's 'Vegetarian Thanksgiving Hotline' and tell Peta and Moby to 'Stuff it'."

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