Germany is Officially the First Country to Ban 'Chick Grinding'
When vegans are asked the very common question of why they refrain from eating dairy products or eggs since the animals involved are technically not being killed in the process, the reasons are never few.
One of the main arguements, in terms of eggs however, is the treatment of chickens within the egg industry. With dozens of chickens cramped into tiny cages with no access to sunlight and being subject to the inhumane practice of de-beaking, many animal rights activists associate eggs with the mistreatment of chickens. For the eggs that are hatched, however, the male chicks are subjected to a completely different fate. They are killed by the very common practice of being ground up alive–or sometimes suffocated, due to not being seen as ‘worthwhile’ to keep as they cannot lay eggs.
While the killing of these male chicks is far from being the only problematic issue within the egg industry, most animal rights activists have learned to take small steps as they come, and treat reforms as victories. For that reason, it was welcome news when Germany announced that it had been working with scientists and animal rights advocates to find a solution to this slaughter of male chicks.
The solution is a newly created technology that will be able to determine the chick of the fertilized egg before the actual process of development begins. This would then lead to the removal of all eggs that were identified as male from the batch, leaving only the female eggs to be hatched.
While the fate of those female chicks and chickens is by no means less disheartening, Germany have at least banned one aspect of senseless killing in their egg industry–saving up to an estimated 45 million male chicks born into the their egg industry every year.
Germany’s Agricultural Minister Christian Schmidt has stated that the practice of chick shredding should be phased out completely by 2017.
While there is yet to be any reform for the treatment of laying hens, this decision still marks a progressive step in ending some needless suffering present in the industry, and the hope is that it will cause a ripple effect and other countries will soon follow suit.
Photo Credit: http://www.zmescience.com/