Wegmans Cruelty: An Unofficial Blog

This is an unofficial blog and informational archive related to the WEGMANSCRUELTY film and resulting campaign.

Please see that page for more information.

Saturday, November 19, 2005

Group takes egg farm protest to Wegmans' HQ

Alan Morrell
Democrat and Chronicle Staff writer

(November 19, 2005) — About 35 people protested Friday in front of Wegmans Food Markets' headquarters on Brooks Avenue about the company's egg farm in Wolcott, Wayne County.

"We decided to take our message to the decision-makers," said Ryan Merkley, coordinator for Compassionate Consumers, who are demanding that Wegmans sell only cage-free eggs. "We're asking them to improve the lives of 700,000 hens in Wolcott who live in squalor."

The group has protested at Wegmans stores in recent months. Three members of the group were indicted on trespassing charges for allegedly breaking into the egg farm in 2004 and videotaping conditions there. Wegmans officials have disputed whether those images, which have been compiled into a videotape, were from the company's egg farm.

"If Wegmans was treating dogs and cats like the chickens, they would be indicted on animal-cruelty charges," Merkley said.

Company spokeswoman Jo Natale said Wegmans Egg Farm recently received a perfect score from a USDA audit, with guidelines established by a panel of animal welfare experts. Wegmans also offers a choice of cage-free eggs, she said.

"We want to assure customers ... that we adhere to the principles that define who we are over the past 89 years," she said.

AMORRELL@DemocratandChronicle.com

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