Washington Post article
The Friday, October 28, Washington Post has a front page story that reveals one of the dirty little secrets of the egg industry. And the Los Angeles Times covers the plight of Pizza the shopping mall polar bear.
The front page Washington Post story, by Animalia reporter Karin Brulliard, is titled, “An early peek in the shell could spare a slaughter.” On line the title is “New technique may prevent the gruesome deaths of billions of male chicks.”
“Amid the recent, growing opposition to tightly caged hens, another practice in the poultry industry has drawn less notice: All male chicks born at egg farm hatcheries are slaughtered the day they hatch. This is typically done by shredding them alive, in what amounts to a blender.
“This mass culling of billions of newborn chicks each year has upset animal welfare groups, and the egg industry itself has recognized a need to end the process. That has fueled a quiet international race to develop technology to determine the gender of a chicken egg before it hatches, known as in-ovo sexing.
“Male chicks are ‘macerated,’ as the egg industry calls the slaughter, because according to the hard math of modern-day poultry farming, the males are useless: They cannot lay eggs, and they’re not the fast-growing breeds that are sold as meat.
“Now a Texas-based company that sells eggs from pasture-raised hens has entered the race to make an industrial-scale sexing technology, saying it has developed a method that can be used the day eggs are laid….”
“Given the costs involved, the egg industry has an incentive to stop killing male chicks.”
You’ll find the full article on line at http://tinyurl.com/zp8xdrw
It gives us a great opportunity for letters to the editor celebrating the potential end of the particular horror described but questioning the ethics of using animals at all for a food we don’t need. You might discuss some of the other ways animals suffer in the egg industry, or the joys and benefits of plant based diets. The Washington Post takes letters at firstname.lastname@example.org