Our undercover video, however, exposes the harsh realities forced upon these baby birds on their very first day of life as they emerge from their shells, destined to be raised for their meat.
According to Bell & Evans’ website, its animal welfare standard “insures [sic] all of our chickens are humanely raised and compassionately handled, in a minimal-stress environment, throughout their lives.” A video posted on the company’s site further explains that in its hatcheries, the newly-hatched “peeps” are “carefully sorted from their shells,” then counted and “placed” in baskets headed for their new “home.”
“Our animal welfare standard insures [sic] all of our chickens are humanely raised and compassionately handled, in a minimal-stress environment, throughout their lives.”
Bell & Evans website
Bell & Evans Investigation Photos
Hatchery Cruelty Investigation
Sadly, what our investigator witnessed and documented tells a different story.
Inside this Bell & Evans facility, where an estimated 20 million baby birds are hatched each year, our video shows chicks being treated like mere inanimate objects:
- Baby birds who are sick, injured or otherwise deemed unfit for processing being dumped into a grinder while fully conscious
- Hours-old chicks jostled from machine to machine in a highly mechanized process
- Chicks with bloody, open wounds or other apparent injuries, deformities or illnesses
- Dead chicks, who did not survive this harsh process, left in baskets with live birds
Watch our video and you decide – does this look humane or compassionate to you?
No matter how it may be marketed to consumers, animal cruelty is standard practice in the chicken industry.
More than eight billion birds are raised and killed for food each year in the U.S. – and with virtually no legal protections whatsoever, their short lives are filled with misery. The most effective way each of us can help end this abuse is to simply leave chickens, and all animals, off our plates.
- Backlash for PA Hatchery as Video Reveals Fate of Some Newborn Chicks. Public News Service. October 23, 2013
- Undercover Cameras Reveal Baby Chick Blenders at Processing Plant. RYOT. October 21, 2013
- Videos: So-called 'humane' chicken hatchery exposed for cruelty. Digital Journal. October 19, 2013
- Cruelty to Baby Chicks at “Humane” Hatchery Exposed. Care2. October 18, 2013
- Pa. poultry producer denies cruelty to chicks. The Philadelphia Inquirer. October 18, 2013
- Undercover video targets Bell and Evans. ABC-27 Harrisburg. October 17, 2013
- ‘Humane’ Chicken and Eggs Line Stores While Chicks End Up in Grinders. One Green Planet. October 17, 2013
- Animal advocacy group decries treatment of chicks at Mifflin County poultry plant. Patriot-News. October 17, 2013
- Surprise! "Humane" hatchery grinds up baby birds. Vegansaurus. October 16, 2013
- Investigation Shows Cruelty to "Humane" Chicken. VegNews. October 16, 2013
- Latest animal rights undercover video targets Bell & Evans. The National Provisioner. October 15, 2013
- Nonprofit accuses PA chicken plant of cruelty. The Philadelphia Inquirer. October 15, 2013
- Video allegedly shows harsh chick treatment at Bell & Evans facility. United Press International. October 15, 2013
- Nonprofit accuses chicken factory of cruelty to chicks. The Philadelphia Inquirer. October 14, 2013
Bell & Evans Hatchery Cruelty Investigation – Take Action, Choose Compassion
Sadly, animal abuse is standard practice in the meat, egg and dairy industries. The most effective way we can take a stand against such cruelty is simply to leave animals off our plates.
Choosing compassion is as easy as choosing plant-based alternatives to your favorite foods. Grocery stores everywhere are stocking up on meat-, dairy- and egg-free options to keep up with the growing demand. Here’s a list of some of our favorite protein-packed plant-based chicken products: