A sub-species of a good-looking bird from Southeast Asia known as the red juglefowl, chickens were originally reared for fighting or ceremonial purposes and there are numerous references to them in myth, folklore, and literature. Indeed, once upon a time, such sacred animals had greater divine status even than man and only they were worthy of sacrifice .
But then someone had the idea of eating them ...
And now they are reared and slaughtered in their billions as a cheap source of food and the intensively farmed chicken has just about the most miserable (if mercifully short) life of any bird on the planet - hardly a day goes by without some fresh horror being revealed (to a largely indifferent public).
These intelligent and sensitive creatures are not just killed, but negated as beings in their very birdhood by the system within which they are enframed. That's what Heidegger meant when he suggested a metaphysical equivalence between mechanised food production and the manufacture of corpses in Nazi extermination camps .
And it's surprising, I think, that there are critics who still find this idea morally insensitive and/or philosophically absurd. What would it take, one wonders, to have them acknowledge the essential sameness that reduces all life - be it avian or human being - to raw material ...?
To argue, like Žižek, that there is no malevolent will to humiliate and punish birds by the farmers - whereas this plays a key role in the treatment of prisoners prior to their murder - may or may not be true, but I don't see that intentionality alters anything; you still end up with a lot of dead chickens .
I can't help hoping that, one day, the spirit of these birds will come home to roost ... Then we'll understand that our destiny has never been separate from theirs .
 See Jean Baudrillard, 'The Animals: Territory and Metamorphoses', in Simulacra and Simulation, trans. Sheila Farier Glaser, (The University of Michigan Press, 1994), pp. 129-141. The line I'm paraphrasing is on p. 133. Later in the text, Baudrillard develops this point and writes:
"Whatever it may be, animals have always had, until our era, a divine or sacrificial nobility that all mythologies recount. Even murder by hunting is still a symbolic relation, as opposed to an experimental dissection. Even domestication is still a symbolic relation, as opposed to industrial breeding." 
 See Martin Heidegger's Bremen lecture of December 1949 entitled Das Ge-Stell in volume 79 of his Gesamtausgabe (1994). The English translation of this volume, trans. Andrew J. Mitchell, is published as the Breman and Freiburg Lectures, (Indiana University Press, 2012), and the above text appears as 'Positionality'.
 In other words, we should speak of impact rather than intention.
 Jean Baudrillard, 'The Animals: Territory and Metamorphoses', Simulacra and Simulation, p. 133.