Jamie Oliver criticises Sainsbury’s for not joining chicken debate

Jamie Oliver was furious that Sainsbury’s failed to turn up to the filming of his investigations into into how chicken and eggs are farmed, according to a report in yesterday’s Daily Mirror.

The TV chef who fronts Sainsbury’s advertising campaign invited the store’s bosses to take part in a public debate

He said: “I’m really upset. The question is why didn’t they come. What is there to hide?”

Mr Oliver also asked representatives from Tesco, Asda and Morrisons to join in the debate but they all failed to show up and only the Co-op and Waitrose took part.

He had hoped to question the supermarkets for his new programme Jamie’s Fowl Dinners – an investigation into poultry farming where he reveals that farmers are paid as little as 3p for a chicken by the supermarkets.

He said: “It is shocking that the people I work for didn’t not bother to turn up, I don’t know why.

“The fact that your PR department hasn’t even got the confidence to turn up and talk about what you do for millions of people who come through your doors each week. Of course the supermarkets should have turned up. How could they not? I was really upset.”

However Sainsbury’s has defended its animal welfare record and a spokesperson said: “As the first supermarket to introduce the new RSPCA Freedom Food standard in 2004 we know that quality and integrity are important to our customers.”

The programme features scenes of chickens being slaughtered and will be screened on Channel 4 on Friday 11 January.

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