Free Birds

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MATTHEW T. STALLBAUMER

About 95 percent of the 300 million laying hens in the United
States are confined to cages. Many of the birds don’t even live
with enough space to spread their wings, and are deprived of fresh
air and exercise. More U.S. businesses are joining the
Humane Society of the
United States’
campaign to discontinue the purchase of eggs
from caged chickens, including:
Whole
Foods Market
, Trader Joe’s, Bon Appetit Management Co.,
Earth Fare,
Jimbo’s?Naturally and
Wild Oats
Natural Marketplace
. Several universities, including George
Washington University, the University of Arizona and the University
of Connecticut, also have stopped purchasing eggs laid by chickens
confined in cages.

You can support this campaign for more humane treatment of
poultry by choosing ‘free-range’ or ‘cage-free’ eggs at your
grocery store. Even better are eggs from hens raised on pasture.
These true free-range eggs often have the added bonus of
being higher in nutrients and lower in cholesterol than eggs from
caged birds.

For information about the health benefits of eggs from pastured
poultry, visit The
Chicken and Egg Page
.

You’ll also find lots of great advice about raising your own
chicks at the Web site of
poultry expert, Robert Plamondon.