16lb plucker : No poultry feat for top turkey defeatherer
Published 19/12/2005 | 00:11
DUSTIN is safe this week - as the fastest turkey plucker on the planet has called it a day.
A County Cavan man who has held the title of World Turkey Plucking Champion for the past twenty-six years - and is listed in the Guinness Book of Records - plucked the feathers of his last bird at the weekend in Bailiboro. Father-of-two, Vincent Pilkington (57) of Cootehill, had retained an amazing speed record of one minute and thirty seconds for 'de-feathering' a sixteen pounder.
He set the record no challenger could match since Christmas I980 - when he gave a performance on RTE TV which brought the achievement into the record books.
Vincent planned to retire last year but friends persuaded him to keep going.
Speedy-fingered Vincent claims he can handle an average of sixteen turkeys in the hour."But now, with all these new EU regulations, it is mostly medium-sized producers that are getting me to do the job . . . the bigger operators send their birds to the processing centres."