CRACKING OPEN THE EGG INDUSTRY
Aktualisiert: 2. Juni
A cynical, ruthless industry that exploits its birds until they’re physically diminished and spent, then kills them. This is the reality of egg production on all commercial farms.
· Hens are selectively bred to lay unnaturally high numbers of eggs (around 300 eggs per bird, per year).
· Half of chicks born in the egg industry are male. Because they won’t lay eggs, they are useless to the industry and summarily killed (maceration, drowning, gassing, suffocation).
· The high egg production leaches calcium from the hen’s bones, leaving her susceptible to broken legs and wings.
· When her egg laying declines, usually around 18 months old, she will be taken to the slaughterhouse and killed (her thanks for laying approximately 450 eggs in a year-and-a-half).
· Stress from overcrowding makes hens behave aggressively. Anecdotally (accurate and up-to-date stats are not made available by the department), it is a routine practice in the industry to remove (by cauterisation) the ends of their beaks when the birds are just a day old; this despite the fact that the legislation stipulates that beak trimming should only be carried out as a last resort.
· Although not kept in cages, most commercial free-range hens are housed in crowded sheds with hundreds and even thousands of birds. Small pop-holes allow outdoor access but weaker hens often never go outside.
Chickens are sentient beings. They can experience pain and suffering, as well as a wide range of emotions, such as fear and anxiety, as well as joy.
They are highly social birds. They live together in a flock and within a distinct hierarchy, commonly referred to as a pecking order. In the wild, they will spend much of their time scratching the ground in their search for insects and seeds. When a cockerel finds food, he often calls the rest of the flock to come and eat. He does this by clucking in a high pitch and picking up and dropping the food. Mother hens also exhibit this behaviour in summoning their chicks.
Wild chickens cover a lot of ground during the day. To avoid potential predators, they use trees and vegetation to maintain a low-visibility profile as they go about their daily business.
None of the above is possible on a typical farm. The best advice we can give to consumers who wish to respect the life of a chicken: don’t eat eggs. It’s that simple.