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Mike Cash

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I realize that most people don't click on the Japanese news articles I link here, but if you can read it yourself or have some techno-cheat that will translate it for you, you might find this exposé of Japan's egg farming and poultry production conditions interesting.

The first thing that jumps out at you is that a whopping 92% of Japan's egg producers would be in violation of standards that govern similar operations in the EU.

Battery hens with effed up legs, wings that have been broken multiple times, bone thickness 1/2 to 1/3 that of chickens free to move around, tumors in their egg sacs, etc.

Worth a read.

日本人だけが知らない「食用卵」のアブない実態(岡田 千尋) | 現代ビジネス | 講談社(1/5)
 

thomas

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Thanks for posting this, Mike. [...] Anyhow, from now on I’ll see my eggs in a different light.
 
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cez

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Honestly, I am surprised that anyone would be surprised by the conditions described in the article.

(Most) eggs in Japan are extremely cheap (for the nutritional value they offer). And whenever animal products are cheap it should be clear that the animals have to suffer. Because that is what mass production leads to.

You can find free range eggs (放し飼い卵、はなしがいたまご) in some supermarkets though if you're willing to pay three times the price. Knowing that in the EU the "free range" label only means that the hens have an allocated space outside (of the factory) that they can access for a certain amount of time during the day, I don't believe the advertised promise of Japanese suppliers that the hens actually run around the farm as they wish but at least they don't keep them in cages where they can barely turn around... or so I'd like to believe for the price I pay.
 

Mike Cash

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Honestly, I am surprised that anyone would be surprised by the conditions described in the article.
I'm actually more surprised by the story being published at all than I am by the content.

I've seen the broilers being hauled in America, which I thought were under poor circumstances, and I've seen them hauled in Japan. The truck ride the chickens get in America is like a Pullman coach by comparison to what they get here.

I've also seen lots of beef operations around where I live and let's just say the cows don't have things markedly better than the chickens.
 

cez

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Thank for the additional details and thank you for posting about the article. I agree that I didn't expect a popular magazine to publish such a long "fact + opinion" piece.

I guess that it paid off for them too given its current ranking as "most popular" on the site and I wonder how many actually read beyond the first page and the initial shock/fascination or denial.
 
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