Meet Tessa, a jolly, singing turkey – voiced by Absolutely Fabulous and Chicken Run: Dawn of the Nugget star Jane Horrocks – the leading character of PETA’s latest Christmas advert. The ad will be screened across UK cinemas during the holiday season, but you can watch it here first:

Following in the footsteps of Toby before her, Tessa marvels at today’s Christmas customs, such as tree trimming and sending letters to Santa, while joyfully singing a modified version of Deck the Halls.

The young turkey’s cheery musical number is cut short, however, when she’s suddenly seized from the street and taken by lorry to an abattoir, where she’s placed on a production line towards certain death.

This dark twist might not seem very festive, but it’s the grim reality for the estimated 10 million turkeys who are killed for Christmas dinner each year in the UK alone.

Introduce Your Friends and Family to Tessa!

This festive season, spread kindness by sharing this video with your loved ones so that more people can celebrate Christmas with kindness and more animals can enjoy spending time with their families, too.

The Turkey Tradition Is Cruel and Archaic

Turkeys are intelligent and gentle birds who, just like Tessa, display curious minds and outgoing personalities. In nature, they’re doting parents and can live for up to 10 years, but those killed for their flesh are denied the chance to live with their families and die prematurely.

Every year, millions of birds are crammed into filthy sheds, where they suffer immensely before being sent to slaughter at just 9 to 24 weeks of age, which means that if a turkey is on your table this year, you’re eating a baby!

At abattoirs, turkeys are often hung from metal shackles by their feet and dragged through an electrified bath that can cause full-body tremors. Stunning is never an exact science, and some birds are still conscious when their throats are slit or as they’re placed into scalding-hot water to remove their feathers.

Start a New, Vegan Tradition

Christmas is a time of goodwill to all, when even the biggest Scrooge can open their heart to kindness. What will you do now that you know how turkeys suffer just so humans can eat them? You can extend the season’s good tidings to all animals simply by leaving them off your plate.

Happily, it’s easier than ever to start a new tradition by enjoying animal- and planet-friendly vegan versions of all the classic Christmas foods you love! Check out our guide to meatless Christmas roasts and enjoy choosing from the wide range of vegan chocolates, crisps, sweets and sides that now fill supermarkets.

Have a Merry Vegan Christmas – and Keep the Good Cheer Going!

Cruelty at Christmas is a tradition that has to die out, but compassion isn’t just for the festive season. It’s simple, healthy, and delicious to enjoy animal-friendly foods all year long. Grab your free vegan starter kit to learn more.