Extreme abuse condoned by taxpayer-funded committee tasked with improving animal welfare, animal rights group speaks out

Mercy For Animals Cries Fowl After National Farm Committee Continues to Allow Blatant Animal Cruelty in Newly Released Code of Practice for Egg Industry

TORONTO, March 27, 2017 /CNW Telbec/ - Today, international animal protection group Mercy For Animals is speaking out against the National Farm Animal Care Council (NFACC) for continuing to condone the use of inherently cruel cages in its newly released code of practice for the treatment of egg-laying hens. NFACC - which receives millions of taxpayer dollars to improve farmed animal welfare - has flagrantly disregarded the interests of Canadian taxpayers, consumers, grocers, and food producers, who all agreed to eliminate cruel cages years ago.

Undercover investigations by Mercy For Animals have repeatedly exposed sickening animal abuse at major egg factory farms across Canada, such as Kuku Farms and Creekside Farms - suppliers to Burnbrae Farms - and Gray Ridge Farms. Abuses include hens crammed in filthy wire cages so small the birds are unable to walk or even spread their wings, dead hens rotting in cages with birds still laying eggs for human consumption, and workers violently bashing chicks and then tossing them alive and conscious into garbage bags to slowly suffocate.

Confining hens in cages is one of the cruelest forms of institutionalized animal abuse in existence. Responding to caring consumers, nearly every major Canadian food company, including Tim Hortons, McDonald's, Loblaw, Metro, Sobeys, and Walmart, has recently pledged to switch to cage-free eggs.

A poll conducted by NRG Research Group found the overwhelming majority of Canadians oppose cramming hens in cages. The survey found that 79 percent of Canadians believe NFACC should advise egg farmers to use cage-free systems and 83 percent of Canadians believe the government should enact laws mandating cage-free egg production. Strikingly, the majority of Canadians believe that NFACC should not receive any more taxpayer funding if it fails to recommend a transition to cage-free egg production. More than 32,000 Canadians joined Mercy For Animals in petitioning NFACC to disallow cages in the egg industry.

The following statement may be attributed to Krista Hiddema, vice president of Mercy For Animals in Canada:

NFACC has failed animals and Canadian consumers by endorsing one of the cruelest factory farming practices in the world. Thankfully, major food producers are listening to consumers and phasing cruel cages out of their supply chains, despite NFACC's backward position. Cramming birds into cages so small the animals can't even stretch their wings has no place in a civilized society. Any food company that has not yet adopted a cage-free egg policy will find itself at odds with ethics and business trends.

To learn more about Mercy For Animals and its efforts to help farmed animals, visit MercyForAnimals.org.


SOURCE Mercy For Animals

For further information: Matt Rice, 347-839-6464

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