cal cruz hatcheries

Cal Cruz Hatcheries Lawsuit & Settlement

November 2014 Update:

Despite a 2012 settlement agreement prohibiting former Cal-Cruz Hatcheries, Inc. owner Brian Collins from working with animals until 2017, a COK undercover investigator has obtained evidence that he is secretly and unlawfully involved in the operation of a hatchery-like business called “Peninsula Poultry.”

On November 19, 2014, COK filed a motion with the Santa Cruz Superior Court asking the court to enforce the terms of the settlement agreement and court order, and also seeking sanctions and monetary damages from Collins.

In June 2012, Compassion Over Killing, represented by Animal Legal Defense Fund (ALDF), finalized a settlement and court order resolving a lawsuit alleging widespread animal abuse and neglect at Cal-Cruz Hatcheries, Inc., a Santa Cruz hatchery that processed millions of baby birds destined for the chicken and duck meat industries annually. We argued the evidence documented in COK’s undercover video of the hatchery constituted unlawful animal cruelty, in violation of the California Business and Professions Code, undermining the integrity of the market. This settlement marked the first time allegations of animal cruelty were successfully resolved using this civil law.

The settlement agreement and accompanying court order prohibits Cal-Cruz from ever keeping or having charge of any animal, and prohibits owner Brian Collins from “owning, possessing, controlling, handling, or being in any way legally responsible for the welfare of animals” until 2017. More details about the settlement and initial lawsuit here.

Case Timeline

January 2009
COK investigator works inside Cal-Cruz Hatcheries – evidence is immediately turned over to local authorities. This prompts an investigation by humane law enforcement that results in the impoundment of 88 ducklings