A new inquiry regarding the major French food brand, Panzani, was published by L214, a French animal welfare association, on May 29 on their online site, accompanied by a shocking video.The images, which were filmed at the start of May in a French farm, show tens of thousands of laying hens living in deplorable conditions. The majority of whom have lost their feathers, some are clearly ill and in pain, and others have sadly passed away and been left in their cages along with the other birds.
This farm, which is among the largest in the country, is one of the main providers for the Panzani group, the top pasta producer in France. The association declared on their website:
In a building containing 80,000 chickens (the farm is made up of two buildings), the chickens are plucked to the extreme. Parasites are plentiful on their eggs and the corpses lying in the cages. Some chickens, seriously injured, have an infected and purulent cloaca [the digestive, reproductive, and urinary tract in birds]. Sick and dying chickens do not receive any care.
This is not the first scandal of its kind; in May 2016, an inquiryalso published by the welfareassociation L214, forced the French brand Matines to recall more than two million eggs from supermarket shelves.Benoît Geslin, director of this farm, admitted that the images captured were shocking, but attempted to minimize the gravity of the situation by invoking a temporary solution:
These images do not reflect our farms on the whole. We have issues in one of our two buildings: the animals are sick because of the bacteria Escherichia coli. This is temporary and happens when working with livestock.
Following the release of the video, the welfare association has pressed charges citing animal cruelty, an offense liable to six months in prison and a fine of 7500 euros (8400 dollars). In an online statement, they declared:
This information is extra proof, if it were even necessary, that farming in cages urgently needs to disappear. That is why the association is asking that the Pazani group stops all use of battery farming as their suppliers. We are launching a petition on Tuesday which demands that information about the number one pasta producer be made public.
Sadly, in the USA there are no federal laws regarding the welfare of animals in factory farms. However, confinement bans are becoming increasingly widespread and ban certain cruel methods of storing animals.Battery cages are banned in California, Massacheussets, Michigan, Ohio, Rhode Island and Washington, but there is still plenty of progress to be made.To help change this legislation regarding animal welfare in your state, you can join the ASPCA Advocacy Brigade hereand help them campaign for animal rights.In the UK, 80% of chickens come from factory farming and according to Animal Equality, up to 50 million chickens die in these farms before they even arrive at the slaughterhouse.To help this organization to put an end to this cruel practice, you can make a donation by clicking here.Watch the shocking video posted by L214 below (in French):
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