Bristol, Easter 2011.
Viva! investigates: A cage is still a cage
Another side of egg production was the battery cage – a byword for cruelty for decades.
However, they are now being replaced across Europe by – yes you guessed it – another cage. Optimistically described as ‘enriched’, hens are still packed into wire prisons – prisons with a little more space. There is some cursory ‘environmental enrichment’ but there is no escaping the fact that it is still a cage.
Viva! investigates: Conveyor belt of death
Hatcheries across Britain produce millions of hens to replace their ‘worn out’ sisters (most killed at just 72 weeks), but not every bird makes it out of the hatchery alive. To be precise, half of them don’t. The fate of male chicks was one of the egg industry’s best kept secrets – until now.
CHILDREN'S TV presenter and pantomime actress Sarah-Jane Honeywell is taking part in a new animal welfare campaign highlighting how hens are still being kept in cages.
Over the next two weeks Sarah-Jane is appearing in six cities across the UK in The Wizard of Oz, as Glinda.
Even though the traditional battery cage was banned in January - many hens remain confined in new 'enriched cages' - which only offer the size of a postcard per bird in extra space.
A GROUND-BREAKING undercover investigation into the reality of so-called enriched cages for egg-laying hens due to be introduced in 2012 has been carried out by animal group Viva!.
Europe's largest campaigning vegetarian and vegan group obtained footage from a massive 'enriched' cage system that Noble Foods (the same people behind 'Happy Eggs') use for their cheaper eggs - with shocking results.
Contented hens, pecking at the ground and enjoying a dust bathe in the sun - that's free-range egg production if you believe the TV adverts.
A major Viva! investigation into the egg industry has shown a very different story claims the campaigning group - one of disease, incarceration, mutilation, short lives and electric shocks. In one of the most ambitious undercover operations Viva! has ever undertaken, the group says it has laid bare the awful truth of what could be one of the biggest UK consumer deceits.
Asda supermarkets have announced plans to release 500,000 British laying hens from battery cages into sheds (barns) by May Day and will no longer sell battery eggs under its standard range. It will, however, continue to sell cheap battery eggs under its own label value range. Animal welfare group Viva! congratulates Asda for having taken a step in the right direction and calls upon all other supermarkets to follow suit and phase out cruel and barbaric battery cages.