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Cal-Maine Response to HSUS Statements

by 5m Editor
19 November 2010, at 9:16am

US - Cal-Maine has responded to allegations of poor welfare conditions at one of its farms by Humane Society of the United States (HSUS).

In response to statements from the HSUS, Cal-Maine Foods, Inc. has issued the following statement:

'Cal-Maine Foods has been a leader in accepting and implementing animal welfare measures. All of the Company's facilities are operated in full compliance with existing environmental, health and safety laws and regulations and permits. Each employee involved in the care and handling of our hens is required to review, sign and comply with our Company code of conduct regarding the ethical treatment of hens which requires employees to report any possible violations. As a fully-integrated shell egg producer, all shell egg facilities are subject to United States Department of Agriculture (USDA) and Food and Drug Administration (FDA) regulations and are subject to various state and local health and agricultural agencies.

'All of Cal-Maine Foods' eggs are produced in accordance with United Egg Producers (UEP) animal care guidelines. Additionally, Cal-Maine Foods offers all of its customers the choice of cage-free eggs. The UEP guidelines are based on recommendations from an independent scientific advisory committee. The guidelines place top priority on the comfort, health and safety of the chickens.

'None of the eggs in the recent nationwide recalls were produced in Cal-Maine facilities' the company's statement ends.

Earlier this week, HSUS reported its latest investigation into industrial agribusiness exposes rampant abuse and food safety problems at a factory farm owned by Cal-Maine, the nation's top egg producer, and subject of an egg recall earlier this month. According to HSUS, Cal-Maine has approximately $1 billion in annual sales and has nearly 30 million laying hens, most of whom are confined in cruel and inhumane cages across the country.

"Our latest farm animal investigation documents inhumane treatment of laying hens and conditions that threaten food safety," stated Wayne Pacelle, president and CEO of HSUS. "Time and again, we've found that these massive facilities caging hundreds of thousands of animals do not properly care for the birds or safeguard our food supply. It's time for the egg industry to embrace cage-free housing systems and move away from battery cage confinement methods."