United Poultry Concerns
Promoting the compassionate and respectful
treatment of domestic fowl

PO Box 150 • Machipongo, VA 23405-0150
(757) 678-7875 • FAX (757) 678-5070

November 4, 2002
Contact: Karen Davis 757-678-7875

United Poultry Concerns Profiled in
Egg Industry Magazine, October 2002
"The fact is there is a whole ton of science which shows that chickens are miserable in cages."
- Karen Davis, PhD, quoted in Egg Industry magazine

Machipongo, Va - The October issue of Egg Industry magazine features stunning interviews with four leaders of the animal advocacy movement including profiles of our organizations. The in-depth coverage of our philosophy and concerns is the result of our attendance at last year's Egg Industry Summit on the welfare of "laying" hens in Las Vegas, Nevada. Interviewed extensively are Karen Davis (United Poultry Concerns), Paul Shapiro (Compassion Over Killing), Bruce Friedrich (PETA), Wayne Pacelle (HSUS), and Dr. Michael Appleby (HSUS).

This 13-page Egg Industry exclusive begins: "No issue poses greater challenges to the egg industry than that of animal welfare." In August, Egg Industry editor Dr. Charles Olentine paid a visit to United Poultry Concerns where he interviewed Karen Davis and toured our chicken sanctuary in Machipongo, Virginia. Here is an excerpt from UPC President Karen Davis concerning the life of battery-caged hens:

"I've been in a lot of battery cage houses. I've broken into them. I think they are the most awful place that you could ever put an enemy. You are nauseated with the ammonia fumes, these birds are miserable, and the young ones are jumping all over each other. When you go through with your camera, what is even more horrifying is seeing the ones who have been in there for a number of months and are not even responding, like they have learned helplessness - their combs are hanging way over their face and their combs are all doughy and white. It's a horrible scene. It's not clean in these places. They are filthy and manure is coming down and crusted and hanging over the bars. . . . There is an endless sound of machines and distressed birds all around you. You can't even describe it to people. What we need in addition to video footage is for something to enable people to smell what it is like in there. These birds are creatures with wings and legs. To take a creature with wings and legs and never let them take a step is horrible."

Davis continues: "The fact is that these birds can never clean themselves. Our birds dust bathe all the time or if a bird is brought here who has traveled awhile in a cage, that's their first act-to have a dust bath. It's just like us, we take a shower or bath. They want to clean themselves. We don't have any right to deprive a creature of their method of practicing bodily hygiene."

In the section on "whether the end justifies the means as regards to break-ins in order to do investigative reporting," COK's Paul Shapiro replies: "A similar question could be posed to egg producers: Does the end (profit) justify the means (abusing and killing millions of animals)? Does terrorizing animals by mutilating them without pain killers (debeaking), forcing them to live with virtually no opportunity to move, depriving them of sunlight and fresh air, starving them (forced molting), and gassing them to death by the millions warrant our concern? Is it ethical to torment those who are weaker than us to make money? When Martin Luther King, Jr., was criticized for using tactics beyond the law, his response-through his famous Letter from a Birmingham Jail-was that one has a moral responsibility to disobey unjust laws."

These observations are a sample of the richly impassioned, professional, and informative interviews presented in the October 2002 issue of Egg Industry, which notes in its profile of United Poultry Concerns that in 1996 UPC President Karen Davis "published a book entitled Prisoned Chickens, Poisoned Eggs: An Inside Look at the Modern Poultry Industry in which she says 'the industry makes its case for us.'"

United Poultry Concerns thanks Dr. Charles Olentine for providing this bold and unique industry coverage of our views on behalf of the birds for whom we speak. The birds have voices. We are their Voice. We appreciate the opportunity to raise the volume.

United Poultry Concerns is a nonprofit organization that promotes the compassionate and respectful treatment of domestic fowl. For more information visit www.UPC-online.org

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