Thursday, April 22, 2010

Say No to Plumping

The chicken mollycoddlers at Foster Farms have a sales angle. Fair enough. They sell dead chickens, after all, and need to do what they can to make the product palatable. The "plumping" business they're going on about is the practice of pumping butchered birds full of saltwater and other stuff to make their carcasses look plumper.

Where things get dicey is in Foster Farms' recruitment of actual chickens to tout the benefits of their killers' "natural" techniques. These chickens act as stand-ins for everyday women chewing over issues such as fairness and body-image, on the one hand, and price and nutritional content on the other.

Shoppers might care about such things, but chickens? In point of fact, actual chickens are unconcerned with the brand stamped on their plastic-wrap caskets. Furthermore, they are untroubled by worries about the eating experience of their consumers!

The production values of these little spots—the down-home, strumming guitar, the naturalistic dialogue, and casual voice talent—conspire to create a folksy atmosphere that soothes skepticism. Which is the only way a segment like the following could fail to make you throw up:
Betsy Chicken: Did you ever think about the health costs?

Martha Chicken: Like what?

Betsy Chicken: Like all the salt you'll be plumped with.

Martha Chicken: Not really.

Betsy Chicken: Well, you should, 'cause you'd have more salt than a large order of French fries.

Martha Chicken: Who doesn't like fries?
Who doesn't like fries?! That's the response? Not "We need to get the hell out of here"? To the chickens, the "health costs" to themselves are of no consequence, and instead they bat back and forth the repercussions to the blood pressure of the people who plan on eating them!

Betsy and Martha, and the rest of the Stepford Squabs, are ever mindful of the buyer, their own lives having no inherent value, to themselves or anyone else.

(Thanks to Dr. Kristen for the referral.)

1 comment:

Frogulous said...

Health costs? High salt doesn't hurt after you're DEAD! Guess it's just their little revenge on the consumers of their flesh.

Chickens planning post mortem payback. There's a movie idea...