SAO PAULO / RIO, Brazil - May 18 - Greenpeace volunteers unfurled a
300 square metre banner in a massive area of deforestation in the Amazon
rainforest this morning with the words 'KFC - Amazon Criminal' - in
advance of Kentucky Fried Chicken's (KFC) Annual General Meeting in
Louisville, Kentucky tomorrow.
Activists in 2 inflatable boats also protested against US commodities
giant Cargill, at its illegal soya export facility in the heart of the
Amazon, which supplies KFC with animal feed in Europe. They held up a
banner saying 'Cargill Out', as rainforest soya was being prepared for
export. Both protests highlight the fact that KFC is fuelling the
destruction of the Amazon by selling cheap chicken fed on soya grown on
Recent Greenpeace investigations (1) have traced the chain of rainforest
destruction directly from the heart of the Amazon, via Cargill's
facility, to KFC's European restaurants (2), which sell bucket-loads of
cheap soya-fed chicken to millions of people every day.
"Deforestation, slavery, use of toxic chemicals, land theft, illegal
farming and the extinction of rare species are a recipe for disaster in
the Amazon rainforest, but they are ingredients in KFC's quest for cheap
animal feed," said Greenpeace International Forest Campaign Coordinator
Gavin Edwards. "Fast food companies like KFC must take Amazon
deforestation off their menu before it is too late for the world's
The Amazon rainforest is being destroyed at an alarming rate and is in
urgent need of protection. Since January 2003, nearly 70,000 km2 has
been destroyed, equivalent to an area of rainforest the size of 6
football pitches every minute. Soya, which is mainly grown to feed
animals, is a leading cause of this destruction. A report last month in
Nature magazine (3) revealed that 40% of the Amazon will be lost by 2050
if current trends in agricultural expansion continue, threatening
bio-diversity and massively contributing to climate change.
KFC is part of Yum! Brands, Inc., the world's largest restaurant chain
which includes Pizza Hut, Taco Bell, A&W and other fast food companies.
Greenpeace recently wrote to Yum! Brands, Inc. regarding the destruction
of the Amazon, but the company claimed its soya is grown in other parts
of Brazil. Yet Greenpeace has traced its supply chain and found that
some comes from facilities that use soya grown in the Amazon rainforest.
Greenpeace is calling on KFC and Cargill to ensure that the animal feed
they buy does not contribute to the destruction of the Amazon and that
none of their soya products are genetically engineered.
Greenpeace is an independent, campaigning organisation that uses
non-violent, creative confrontation to expose global environmental
problems, and to force solutions essential to a green and peaceful future.
Notes to Editors:
(1) A copy of the "Eating up the Amazon' which documents the problems of
soya in the Amazon is available at:
(2) Greenpeace has key evidence including:
- US company Cargill, which owns an illegal export terminal at Santarem,
is supplied by farms operating on rainforest land that has been
illegally cleared for soya production.
- Almost all of the soya passing through this terminal is destined for
Europe. In 2005 more than 50% went to the Netherlands, 31% went to the
UK, Spain received 6.5% & 6% to France.
- Industry sources and Greepeace research have identified Cargill soya
terminals in Europe, through which Cargill's amazon soya enters the
continent, as a source of feed for KFC meat in the UK and Netherlands.
(3) Soares-Filho, B.S. et al., 2006. Modelling conservation in the
Amazon basin. Nature 440:520-523. Published 23rd March 2006