by MPD
Categories: Eats
Tags: .
Photo: prphotos.com

In wake of the largest egg recall in United States history, the Dalai Lama is speaking out against the cruel egg industry. With more than a half billion eggs already recalled because of possible salmonella contamination, it’s clear that modern factory farming is doing harm to more than just our animal friends.

In an official statement released to The Humane Society of the United States, the Dalai Lama said, “The abuse we inflict on hens has always been particularly disturbing to me and I have always been particularly concerned toward how these animals are treated in industrial food production. I am troubled to learn about the practice of confining egg laying hens in tiny cages. In these cages, birds cannot engage in their natural behaviours, such as spreading their wings, laying eggs in a nesting area, perching, scratching at the ground, even standing on a solid surface. Each hen has less space to live than the very sheet of paper I have written this letter on. Turning these defenseless animals into egg-producing machines with no consideration for their welfare whatsoever is a degradation of our own humanity. Switching to cage free eggs would reduce the suffering of these animals.”

As of right now, close to 95 percent of egg-laying hens in the United States are confined in battery cages, and we think that totally stinks.  Big props to the Dalai Lama for speaking out!

  • http://www.facebook.com/people/Vicky-Ramirez/529560209 Vicky Ramirez

    I am glad that the Dalai Lama issues these kind of statements, as he has a lot of power and a lot of people listen to what he says. Unfortunately switching to cage free eggs isn’t the solution though (I used to buy cage free eggs until today) I actually just saw on the PETA website the picture of the “cage free hens” and they live in a very “cramped” space with very little possibility to go to the outside. Even worse, is the fact that the farmers (or industry) that sell the “cage free eggs” are the same ones that sell the other 95% of eggs, i.e. the battle hen eggs.

    Maybe the solution is to buy from “smaller farmer’s” eggs, or have our own egg producing chickens in out backyard…I personally would find it hard to go vegan.

  • http://www.facebook.com/people/Josh-Lamb/100000872581980 Josh Lamb

    Awesome message Dalai Lama

  • http://Veganthis.org v Justin v

    Or you could like, stop abusing animals at all and go vegan. Cage free, local, organic, ect though nicer, still subjugate and force animals to work for human gains. Animals exist for their own ends, not to be used by humans as sources of food or clothing. Going vegan is cheap, easy, and healthy, and the only reason people find it “hard” is because they are still trapped in the warped mindset that tells them using animals is ok. If you had any real compassion for animals, you would stop having them enslaved and abused in your name, whether that be by wearing leather, eating their flesh, drinking their excretions, or consuming their eggs. Veganism and liberation is the answer, nicer use is not.

    • Michael Raymer

      You fail to mention habitat loss, which is the major issue involving “cruelty” to animals. The home you live in, the neighborhood it’s located, the schools you attend(ed), the stores you shop at, police stations, firehouses, hospitals, cities, towns, villages, not to mention the roads that link all of the above. And farms? Look at all the room that farms take up. All these deprive deer, buffalo, bear, moose, elk….and of course, the sqirrels; the habitat they need to exist. I have flown over the country many times and seen the vast tracts of farmland that deprive our furry friends a place to live. What shall we do about that? What good is liberation if the animals have no place to go? What about the migratory routes that highways, fences and other barriers get in the way of? How do you plan on addressing these issues?

      • georgina

        There you go, nobody is ever going to win this debate ever because no environmentalist, hippie, vegan, vegetarian, Dalai Lama. Nobody will ever be good enough to live up those names, nobody will ever measure up to unrealistic notions of those who attach back with statements such as “well, if you are vegan then you don’t have a car because car tires use this and that which comes from animals.”

        Why tire makers use stearic acid from animals and not from vegetable sources is beyond me, or maybe it is because there really is not more space to plant vegetables in large scale because all this country wants to produce is corn to feed animals farmed for food.

    • David

      Excuse me Justin but do you do anything that involves rubber tires? Then you aren’t vegan. The process of making rubber tires uses stearic acid from animals.

      • don miguelo

        Stearic acid is also made from vegetable sources. Tires CAN be made with stearic acid from animals, but, importantly, are NOT ALWAYS made that way.

        Again this goes back to your theme of impossible requirements to be met before you allow anyone to have a different perspective than yours. The only way to attain no effect on the world is to not exist within it. That is putting the cart before the horse a bit don’t you think? You totally missed that the sphere of destruction is much bigger if you don’t actively try to contain it.

        –or to quote a favorite band: “At least I’m F**king trying! What the F**k have YOU done?” (besides try to tear down everyone in sight and generally not listen out of fear, I mean).

      • David

        Well I am not posting ad hominem attacks just because I disagree with someone. I also like how you waited over a week to comment. Hoping that it wouldn’t be noticed so you can make it look like you ‘won’?

        If you read Justin’s post you would see that he is the one that requires an all or nothing approach.

        “If you had any real compassion for animals, you would stop having them enslaved and abused in your name, whether that be by wearing leather, eating their flesh, drinking their excretions, or consuming their eggs. Veganism and liberation is the answer, nicer use is not.”

        So I was making the point that he isn’t even living up to his own standard.

        Yes you can get stearic acid from vegetable sources, so find me a tire company that uses more expensive vegetable stearic acid instead of cheaper animal stearic acid, except for specialist applications.

    • Kimitake Hiraoka

      I’m with you on this one, Michael.

      That’s why it is more ethical to eat wild sea creatures as they are the ultimate free range meat source. No intensive farming, no museling, no live transportation, no unhygenic conditions. No requirement for vast areas of deforsted land. No enormous carbon emissions. No consumption of vast quantities of water and feed.

      Just good, clean food.

      Minke and humpback steak – the ethical choice.

      • georgina

        So Kimi, does that mean you eat whale and nothing else?

      • Carrie Folts

        You’re right Kimi. But let’s just get into the fact that it’s illegal to kill whales since they are an endangered species and could easily become extinct, and that the whale you eat is probably from a sanctuary making it even worse. And let’s take into consideration the fact that if we keep fishing our oceans the way we do we could kill them off in 40 years. I don’t know about you but that’s well within my lifetime. Lastly let’s take a look at the fact that some of the ‘whale’ that is sold in countries like Japan is really dolphin meat which is often dangerously high in mercury which could lead to you being poisoned. There is just as much lying and deceit going on in the fishing industry as any other, don’t for a second think that there isn’t, to do so would be incredibly sad.
        The best thing we can all do is educate ourselves about where our food really comes from. And what’s happening to it before it hits our plate.

    • Ward

      Let’s not forget the billions of animals that are killed by poisons and pesticides both in the fields and in the vegetable storage facililties. I’ve seen no significant studies (read..no insignificant ones either) about the impact of the various methods of pest control used to kill rats, mice, rabbits, bugs, etc and the predators that eat them thereby injesting those poisons. Veganism is far more cruel than any other diet only in that they, in the name of animal rights, completely ignore their own role in in the genocide of millions of sentient organisms that compete with them for the vegetables they eat. At least the meat industry has established standards of humane death. Where are those standards in the slow painful death by poison of all the rats and mice in the grain bins of vegan wheat providers?

      • don miguelo

        Ok Ward (of-the-state?), that is some impressive spin ya got there. I am impressed, really, way to turn that all around back on them killer vegans. Truly a work of art.

        You’ve inspired me: Let’s not forget that when the Earth goes into the Sun, we should blame the Sun for the brutal killer it will be for extinguishing all life on Earth. Screw that merciless Sun! Boycott it!

      • georgina

        Hey Ward, if “At least the meat industry has established standards of humane death” how do you explain that when USDA inspectors report anomalies back to their offices they get fired? Besides, there is nothing humane about the way cows, chickens, and other animals raised for food die for your dinner plate. That is a huge, fancy lie you have swallowed just like the piece of carcass that will be sitting on your plate tonight.

        By the way, do you work at a slaughter house? Read this and please explain to me how is this humane? (Excerpts taken from this article: https://hfa.org/hot_topic/wash_post.html)

        * Hogs, unlike cattle, are dunked in tanks of hot water after they are stunned to soften the hides for skinning. As a result, a botched slaughter condemns some hogs to being scalded and drowned. Secret videotape from an Iowa pork plant [provided by the Humane Farming Association] shows hogs squealing and kicking as they are being lowered into the water.

        *“I’ve seen thousands and thousands of cows go through the slaughter process alive,” IBP veteran Fuentes, the worker who was injured while working on live cattle, said in an affi-davit. “The cows can get seven minutes down the line and still be alive. I’ve been in the side-puller where they’re still alive. All the hide is stripped out down the neck there.”

        * It takes 25 minutes to turn a live steer into steak at the modern slaughterhouse where Ramon Moreno works. For 20 years, his post was “second-legger,” a job that entails cutting hocks off carcasses as they whirl past at a rate of 309 an hour. The cattle were supposed to be dead before they got to Moreno. But too often they weren’t.
        “They blink. They make noises,” he said softly. “The head moves, the eyes are wide and looking around.” Still Moreno would cut. On bad days, he says, dozens of animals reached his station clearly alive and conscious. Some would survive as far as the tail cutter, the belly ripper, the hide puller. “They die,” said Moreno, “piece by piece.”

        * The U.S. Department of Agriculture oversees the treatment of animals in meat plants, but enforcement of the law varies dramatically. While a few plants have been forced to halt production for a few hours because of alleged animal cruelty, such sanctions are rare. For example, the government took no action against a Texas beef company that was cited 22 times in 1998 for violations that included chopping hooves off live cattle. In another case, agency supervisors failed to take action on multiple complaints of animal cruelty at a Florida beef plant and fired an animal health technician for reporting the problems. The dismissal letter sent to the technician, Tim Walker, said his dislosure had “irreparably damaged” the agency’s relations with the packing plant.

        Also, totally agree with Don Miguelo…good to find out from you that i am just as cruel as you are even when i am a vegan. No, really, an eye opener.

      • Toodles

        Ward if you were really concerned about animals killed while raising crops, you’d go vegan, here’s why:

        The top three crops in the United States are 1) Corn-80% used for animal feed, 2) Soy-98% of soymeal used for animal feed, and 3) Hay-100% used for animal feed. (Remember, even grass-fed beef eats hay for a large portion of the year.)

        The only way to reduce wild-animal displacement and death due to agriculture is to use as little land as possible to produce our nutritional requirements. In that respect, Vegan and vegetarian diets are far superior to a meat-centered diet.

        However, I have a feeling you really aren’t that concerned with wild-animal deaths and were just spouting off.

    • steve

      While you’re at it stop hurting plants, and just live off air and water. Wait water has microscopic organisms (animals too, right?) so better just stick to air….The cruelty of large farms is terrible but there are local markets to buy fresh eggs, fruits, and veggies.

      • georgina

        Ok steve…there is a big difference between plants and human animals and non-human animals. For starters they do not have a brain or a central nervous system, they do not have bones, blood, muscles, eyes, ears, noses, lungs, kidneys, hearts, or livers, like humans and animals do, so it is impossible for a plant to feel pain the same way as an animal. Plants are a bunch of cells that grow.

        As a vegan, I am aware that plants have life, but they do not feel pain like animals and people do. They don’t squirt out blood and don’t struggle to survive.

  • georgina

    Ahh, such a deceitful industry needs to be shamed. All those commercials with happy chickens with clean feathers, three feet away from the next chicken just make me nauseous, and, even though we are not talking about milk, the stupid “happy cows come from California” commercials make me sick as well. They lie to our faces and people love thinking that the eggs and cheese they buy come from such idyllic farms, when really they come from disgusting places where chickens are crammed in tiny cages sometimes 10-12 chickens per cage, and never get to see a single ray of sunshine. And don’t get me started on those nice labels “cage free,” “free range,” and “farm fresh” which are only good to soothe a guilty or an über ignorant conscience.

    The industry is powerful and is feeding you more than eggs, is feeding you lies and like good sheep you follow them.

    • Joanne Anand

      I am very happy to see this story, it’s great to see the Dalai Lama has spoken out about the immense cruelty we subject animals such as chickens to every day. This shouldn’t be turned into a big vegan debate as vegans need to realise the entire world aren’t suddenly going to give up all meat and animal products just because you tell them to, it is a massive baby steps process and for now we have to focus on how to raise awareness and get people to insist on cruelty free methods so that animals are not suffering and then raise awareness of their intelligence and educate people on how we have other alternatives. Humans are strange creatures in that if you come on too strong they stick their heads in the sand, think “oh it’s all too hard” and then do nothing so it is important we tackle the most important issues in order of what eases their suffering before discussing ‘car tyres.’ I am a vegetarian, no dairy person but I am not a full vegan and I am sneaky in the way I raise awareness, I try very hard not to ram my beliefs down people’s throats and I have had 4 people tell me they have given up meat after seeing my posts etc. If I said it’s not good enough, “GO VEGAN!” y’know what they’d do? They’d say “You’re an extremist, this is too hard” and would probably go back to eating meat again. Baby steps people, lets stop argueing about car tyres and focus on stopping animals suffering the quickest way we can. we have to remember that all humans are complex, stubborn and selfish creatures, we can’t expect if we tell people what to do that they will, they’re more likely to retreat into their ignorant shells and blame you.

      • georgina

        Is your comment in reply to mine? Because even though i am a VEGAN i did not say the V word in this one post, not once.

        Although i agree with you in that sometimes you have to sneak-attack people, other times that does not work, and not all people process things the same way, so you adapt. If my comment was too strong for you, well, i am not sorry, that is just what i think, and it is nice to come to this site and post just what i am thinking about when it comes to animal cruelty and not worry about what people will think because, honestly, the people that post here are always the same ones and very strong in their opinions no matter which side of the fence they are.

        The day will come when everyone will realize the far reaching consequences of their diets; what some of us do here is plant seeds here and there, some in a subtle way (such as yourself) and others not so subtle, still, who can say it won’t work? We just keep trying, Ecorazzi is not the one and only avenue to spread the word.