Investigation Suggests Brutal Abuse Of Chickens At Lake Wales Farm

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The Animal Recovery Mission (ARM), an animal rights group, has leaked some not so pretty rumblings against a Lake Wales, Florida, egg farm. Said findings indicate that chickens harbored at the facility have been exposed to serious, life-threatening levels of abuse.

The ARM’s allegations came to fruition following a comprehensive two month investigation of Cal-Maine Egg Farm. One of the very first news outlets to cover the story was ABC Action News Tampa Bay, catapulted by Marisela Burgos.

The animal rights activist organization reveals that the hens reside in overcrowded conditions. As a result, the hens tend to thus get crushed and even “strangled” to death according to startling reports from the WFLA news team. The same data exemplifies that the hens are forced to live among those of their species that are already dead. Such an atmosphere has also spurred the onset of dehydration, starvation, and other related illnesses, further contributing to the brutality.

The alarming abuse does not stop there, however. Given what Brian Hamacher of NBC recently exposed, employees at the Lake Wales farm has taken additional action against the creatures for reasons unknown. These sickening actions evidently include, yet are not limited to, kicking the birds, mercilessly slamming them to the floor, and even yanking them apart while still alive.

Chickens Stuck In Coops
Featured image credit: David SilvermanGetty Images

ARM’s conclusions further exhibit that Cal-Maine frequently distributes eggs to major suppliers such as Walmart and Publix, via Burgos.

Hamacher’s research, to no surprise perhaps, also included comments from Cal-Maine relative to the leaked incident. Granted the company did not necessarily deny the accusations, it is safe to say they were not openly apologetic, either.

“They [the police department] reported they did not find comparable conditions to what was shown on the video. We believe that this was an isolated incident and does not reflect the ethical standards of animal care expected of all Cal-Maine Foods employees,” Cal-Maine’s statement read. “Further, we continue to work with our animal welfare team to prevent this from happening in the future.”

In spite of the perceivable lack of an apology, Cal-Maine has not taken the situation gingerly. At least one manager’s actions have been examined. Those actions did indeed suggest that brutal, unnecessary abuse did, in fact, occur. Consequently, that same employee was immediately fired.

Another reporter on the matter, ABC’s Amanda Batchelor, points out the local police department took more aggressive action following their own investigation. She reports that the Polk County Sheriff’s Office ultimately elected to arrest the abovementioned manager, whose name is said to be Matthew, by virtue of repeated instances of animal cruelty.

Albeit Cal-Maine asserts the discovery is indicative of a singular happening, not everyone is entirely persuaded that this is true. Batchelor’s article includes snippets of a news release from ARM that sharply contrasts Cal-Maine’s beliefs.

“These brutal actions are being executed by both employees of the facility and managers alike and are clear violations of company codes of conducts and animal welfare policies required to be a humane certified business.”

This statement and Cal-Maine’s clearly differ to some extent, therefore making the leaked story all the more curious.

Those connected with ARM will continue to correspond with local authorities, with the latter apparently being more than willing to lend a helping hand.