|For Immediate Release: May 1,
Josh Bryant 585-739-5860 or firstname.lastname@example.org
Joel Bartlett 860-685-6016 or email@example.com
Wesleyan University is First American University to Take a Stand
Against The Cruelties of Factory Egg Farming
Middletown, CT - On Sunday, April 27th, the Wesleyan Student Assembly
(WSA) passed a resolution demanding the elimination of eggs laid in extremely
cruel conditions from the campus grocery store, WEShop. In doing
so, the WSA became the first student representation group at an American
university to take a stand against so-called "factory egg farming."
Furthermore, the resolution recognized that animal well-being is a legitimate
factor in institutional decision-making. ARAMARK, Wesleyan's food-service
provider, has agreed to act in accordance with the WSA's decision.
"By eliminating this source of suffering from WEShop Wesleyan students
have expressed their commitment to responsible consumption and compassion,"
said Lori Gruen, Professor of Philosophy at Wesleyan. "In a world
in which there currently is so much suffering, human and non-human, the
students have not succumbed to apathy and despair and have taken a bold
step to minimize their role in causing unnecessary suffering."
Factory egg farms are infamous for their cruel conditions - for both
hens and workers - and for the environmental threats they pose.
"Up to ten hens are forced to live in a cage so small that one hen could
not spread her wings," said Matt Montesano, a member of Wesleyan's
Environmental Organizers' Network (EON). "Hens are in lifelong pain
because up to two-thirds of their beaks are cut off as chicks. Hens
in factory farms are periodically starved for up to three weeks in a practice
called force-molting, which attempts to shock hensí bodies into another
In addition to the routine labor exploitation by the corporations, workers
at factory farms are exposed to many work-related hazards such as excretory
ammonia fumes from the nitrogen in decomposing bird droppings. The large
amount of solid waste produced by factory farms is harmful to local ecosystems,
as is the release of ammonia gas.
"The European Union has banned the installation of battery cages," said
Liz Eisenberg, a member of EON, referring to the long rows of stacked cages
that hens are kept in, "but the United States has not yet recognized that
these conditions are deplorable."
Large agribusiness corporations dominate the American egg industry and
drive smaller, sustainable farms out of business. In Connecticut,
KofKoff Egg Farm controls 90 percent of the egg market and is blamed for
bankrupting local farms. Wesleyan's resolution states a commitment
to encourage increased cooperation with small, local, certified organic,
free-range farmers in an effort to provide students with the most sustainable
products and to help support local farmers.
The resolution comes after an intensive, semester-long campaign by EON
to raise awareness about factory egg farming. For more information
on the campaign, visit www.wesleyan.edu/wsa/warn/eon.
Click, to download a Word document version
of this press release.