Published by Ashley Palmer.

The following article was written by Rachel and originally appeared on the peta2 blog.

It’s easy to think that “organic” and “free-range” mean that animals live a good life. Once upon a time, I believed it—and I’m sure some of you do too. Sadly, it’s just untrue. These terms, along with “cage-free” and others, are meant to trick compassionate consumers into buying into an industry that exploits animals. Don’t believe me? Check out these gut-wrenching photos from the Organic Valley Farm in Wisconsin: They show birds in stinking, stifling, windowless warehouses, crammed so tightly together that they’re barely able to move—much less spread their wings, scratch in the dirt, or interact normally in any way.

Like many other facilities that raise young birds, this house in Southwest Wisconsin confines its animals, granting no outdoor access whatsoever, and provides virtually no natural light in the building.
Photo by The Cornucopia Institute. Koldewijn

Around 36,000 birds in an aviary system in Wisconsin, supplying Chino Valley Ranchers. The hens also have access to
an outdoor run.
Photo by The Cornucopia Institute.

“Organic” doesn’t mean that birds are allowed to be free. Cage-free does not mean free range, of course, and so the chickens can still be crammed into sheds and forced to suffer through having a part of their beaks cut off, just like birds on factory farms. But “organic” does mean that the chickens aren’t fed antibiotics—leaving them all the more susceptible to illness in the filthy, poorly ventilated, crowded conditions.

The outside view of a 60,000-bird “organic” henhouse in Pennsylvania. The other side of the building has a small grassy porch as “outdoor access.”
Photo by The Cornucopia Institute.

A two-story henhouse with tens of thousands of organic hens inside. The small, enclosed porch on the first floor provides “outdoor access” for the chickens on the second floor as well—it is accessible via a ramp that leads chickens down, single-file.Photo by The Cornucopia Institute.

Love animals? Don’t support this or any other industry that abuses them for profit. Go vegan!

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