Each year, in the US alone, more than 300 million chickens are horribly tortured in egg factories, and it all starts from the very first day of a chicken’s life. Chicks raised for egg production are hatched in large incubators, and males and females are separated almost immediately. Males, considered unprofitable and therefore useless for the egg industry, suffocate in garbage bags.
Female chicks are sent to egg farms, where part of their sensitive beaks are cut off with a hot blade. This mutilation is done hours or days after hatching and without pain relief.
On farms, chickens are kept in total confinement, either in cages that can house up to 10 birds at a time, or in dark, overcrowded barns, where each bird has only about 0,2 square meters of floor space. In any case, birds live between each other’s urine and feces.
Chickens used for eggs endure this suffering and abuse for two years until they are killed.
Due to the stressful and dirty conditions described above, many chickens die in the cage or on the barn floor. Surviving chickens are often forced to live next to their dead or dying counterparts, whose bodies are sometimes left to rot.
As soon as the hens start producing fewer eggs, they are considered useless and killed. Some are gassed, others are sent to slaughterhouses.
Is the life of a chicken more important than an omelet? The only acceptable answer is yes. Chickens are inquisitive animals whose cognitive abilities are on par with cats, dogs and even some primates, according to leading animal behavior scientists. We would never want our cats or dogs to be treated in this way, so it is not a good idea to support such mistreatment of any creature.
“I only buy organic eggs,” many say. Unfortunately, this excuse means nothing to chickens. One PETA investigation after another shows that the bullying described above is also widespread on “free-range” or “cage-free” farms. Some of the brutal footage was filmed on farms run by companies that supply eggs to organic food stores such as Kroger, Whole Foods and Costco.
The only reliable way to protect chickens from cruelty is to refuse to eat their bodies and eggs. There are many tasty alternatives to eggs. Being a vegan has never been so easy!