A blog about the latest developments in the food technology sector.
Thursday, December 31, 2009
"CAGE-FREE" CHICKENS AND "CRUELTY-FREE" EGGS
Modern day life style diseases seem to be caused by the dramatic changes in the agricultural and livestock farm practices. Free grazing cattle, freely roaming chickens and natural cultivation without use of chemical fertilizers and pest protectants have given way to shackled cattle, caged birds and mechanized agricultural farms producing foods which are considered much inferior and less safer to what were being produced 50-100 years ago. Increasing realization of these bitter truth has generated widespread demand for organic foods produced in a "natural way". Latest in such changing attitudes amongst consumers is the demand for eggs produced by birds which are not raised in restricted cages.
"The organization stops short of calling for the elimination of factory farms. "It's not a matter of creating Old McDonald's-type conditions," said Paul Shapiro, who heads the nonprofit's End Factory Farming campaign. "Our goal is to reduce the suffering these animals endure." California's Proposition 2, the 2008 ballot initiative that by 2015 will free egg-laying chickens from their cages, marked the animal protection group's most public and successful foray from its historic campaigns to stop the clubbing of baby seals in Canada and dog fighting and puppy mills in the U.S. The landslide victory came despite threats of higher prices -- anywhere from a penny an egg more to 25 percent more per carton. The animal welfare group has convinced some of the country's largest users -- fast food restaurants such as Wendy's, Burger King, Starbucks and Dennys, and retailers such as Safeway and Costco -- to make at least a gradual switch to cage-free eggs. Red Robin will go totally cage free by the end of 2010".
Probably animal activists may even succeed in "liberating" diary and meat animals also from stressful confinement as it is happening to day. Recent documentary films highlighting the cruelty perpetrated in chicken and meat processing factories in the western countries have captured the imagination of the consumers and it is a question of time before consumer resistance will force the meat industry to improve the current practices that will ensure humane approach while raising and slaughtering the animals.