Farm fire kills 25,000 chickens in the Netherlands

Brown chickens behind a fence, animal news
Chicken farm, Netherlands, photo: Taju_S via Canva

A farm fire killed 25,000 chickens on Tuesday in the Netherlands. The animals were locked up in a chicken shed in Varsen and couldn’t escape the fire.

The barn, about 30 by 70 meters, was completely destroyed. None of the 25,000 chickens inside the barn survived the fire.

Two weeks ago, 43,000 chickens were killed in a farm fire in Heusden in the Netherlands. “The animals were trapped like rats and couldn’t go anywhere,” a neighbour who saw the fire from her home told Dutch news channel RTL Nieuws then.

In the Netherlands, over 1.3 million animals have died in barn fires in the past eight years, yet the Dutch government hasn’t prioritized preventing fires on animal farms.

Investigative journalism platform Ivestico analyzed every farm fire since 2012 and concluded that mega-farms burn more easily than conventional farms.

Investico said that the number of mega-farms in Holland has increased, but that fire safety requirements were not being met.

The Dutch government did not adapt recommendations to make mega-farms safer, such as a way to escape for animals or banning old boilers and geysers. It also rejected advice to limit farm sizes.


The Animal Reader is a small independent animal news platform based in the Netherlands. Sign up for our weekly newsletter.

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