British scientists who looked into the behavior of chickens and say they found hints of empathy being shown - the ability to see things from another's point of view - has not been received well from egg producers who fear people will now refuse to buy battery farmed eggs.
Of even greater concern is that it could lead to customers refusing to buy any meat produce at all, reasoning that if chickens have empathy then in all probability so do other animals.
The government insist that will not happen but have refused to admit or deny whether their certainty has anything to do with chemical additives in foods being designed to 'dumb down' the empathic gene in human beings.
Meanwhile scientists say they soon expect to identify the empathic gene in animals anyway and will then be able to eliminate it from those bred for slaughter. Such meat would then simply be packaged showing a 'NEM' tag (Non-Empathic Meat).
Vietnam is rumored to have already expressed an interest in importing millions of Rottweiller dogs from the United Kingdom!