By Gary Bogue
Tuesday, August 18th, 2009 at 8:55 am in Cage-free eggs.
Gap, Inc. has joined the list of leading California companies — like Google, Yahoo! and Bon Appétit Management Company — in switching to cage-free (http://www.hsus.org/farm/camp/nbe/compare.html) eggs for its corporate cafeterias.
The decision came after the San Francisco-based company learned that factory farms confine most egg-laying hens in the U.S. in tiny battery cages (http://www.hsus.org/farm/camp/nbe/) where each hen has less space than a standard sheet of paper on which to live for more than a year before she’s slaughtered.
In a landslide vote last November, nearly 64% of California voters passed the Prevention of Farm Animal Cruelty Act, thereby criminalizing confinement of hens in battery cages statewide (with a phase-out). National chains Burger King, Wendy’s, Quiznos, Denny’s and Carpinteria, Calif.-based Carl’s Jr. have also started using cage-free eggs.
** U.S. factory farms confine about 280 million hens in barren battery cages so small, they can’t even spread their wings. Scientific research confirms this causes suffering.
** Cage-free hens generally have two to three times more space per bird than caged hens. Cage-free hens may not be able to go outside and may have parts of their beaks cut off, but they can walk, spread their wings, and lay their eggs in nests — all behaviors permanently denied to hens crammed into battery cages.
** Gap Inc., the parent company of Gap, Banana Republic, Old Navy, Piperlime and Athleta, has a policy against the use of animal fur. Gap Inc. joins more than 150 companies on The HSUS’ fur-free shopping guide.