More then 10 million chickens needed per year by McDonalds will be sent to the gas chamber in what is claimed as a more humane way of killing them.

The new technique will use a nitrogen and argon mixed with carbon dioxide, to render the chicken unconscious before their throats are cut.

The gassing, known as controlled atmosphere killing (CAK), involves moving a container of chickens directly from a lorry into a giant gas chamber. The birds are said to die within minutes and suffer minimal handling.

Currently, chickens are loaded into lorries, taken to a slaughterhouse, unloaded by hand and then hung upside down to a moving belt. This process is known to distress the birds and cause bodily harm to them. The birds then go through a process of electrocution and then decapitation.

McDonalds remain committed to animal welfare.