Saturday, January 29, 2011

Old MacDonald had a farm

The commercial poultry industry probably doesn't really care too much if people have backyard chickens.  After all, if the community gets excited about eggs, it could be good for sales in general.  Besides, only a small minority of people want to do it.

What they don't want are questions about what's going on behind those closed egg farm doors.  Serious questions about animal welfare and antibiotic usage can lead to pressure to reform or even end practices that currently go unchecked, which will have an impact on the bottom line. 

Undoubtedly there are two sides to every story, but one angle is conveniently overlooked by most people who happily pick up a tray or two of cheap eggs when they come on sale at the grocery store.  While the public is justifiably outraged when stories emerge about pet abuse and cruelty, the life of animals on factory farms is nothing like the idyllic farmlife we teach our children about when they are young.  And the scale is in the billions.

This is the other side of the poultry industry, the uncomfortable side we seldom see, and most of us don't think about too deeply:

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