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.

Friday, June 23, 2006

(June 23, 2006) — Trespasser gets stay of sentence

Rochester Democrat & Chronicle

Adam Durand, the Rochester man sentenced to six months in Wayne County Jail for illegally entering Wegmans Food Markets Inc. egg farm in Wolcott, Wayne County, has been released pending an appeal.

Durand was found guilty of three counts of criminal trespassing in May and began serving his jail sentence May 16. He has been granted a stay of his sentence from the state Supreme Court Appellate Division and will be out on bail until his appeal hearing.

The animal activist had illegally entered the egg farm to film the hens' conditions, which Durand and fellow members of the group Compassionate Consumers believe to be inhumane.

Wegmans has said that its animal care standards at the 700,000-hen farm exceed state and federal requirements.

Wednesday, June 21, 2006

Adam Durand Granted a Stay of Sentence

Tuesday, 20 June 2006

This morning the presiding judge of the New York State Supreme Court Appellate Division Fourth Department granted a stay of sentence pending appeal for Adam Durand. Adam was released on bail today. This release will most likely last months until the Appellate Division makes a decision on his appeal.

This stay of sentence makes everyone more hopeful for Adam's case for appeal. Because of the ongoing appeal Legal Defense Funds are needed now more than ever. Adam's case has garnered media attention that has informed millions about the suffering of hens at Wegmans Egg Farm. The appeal will continue to draw attention to the animals' suffering.

You can donate via PayPal by clicking on the icon on the left side of the page or via mail.

Adam was sentenced on May 16 to six months in jail for revealing the egregious cruelty at Wegmans Egg Farm. Wegmans requested the harsh sentence received by Durand—-a first time offender-—in an obvious attempt to silence critics of the company’s inhumane practices.

You can listen to the “Animal Voices” radio interview about Adam and the campaign with Compassionate Consumers Campaign Coordinator Ryan Merkley here

Read the City Newspaper article "Jailing a cage-free activist".

Listen to the podcast interview with Ryan Merkley on "Erik's Diner". (The interview begins about one-third of the way into the podcast.)

Read the Finger Lakes Times article here.

June 25: El Paso Radio Interview With Ryan Merkley
Monday, 29 May 2006
ImageThe Sunday, June 25 Animal Concerns of Texas radio show will carry an interview with Ryan Merkley, Campaign Coordinator for Compassionate Consumers. Ryan will discuss the investigation of Wegmans Egg Farm, the campaign, and Adam's sentencing. The show is broadcast on KTEP National Public Radio in El Paso, Texas. The show can be heard at 7:30 pm Mountain Time (9:30 pm Eastern Time).

You can listen to the show live on KTEP's website. (Click on the link at the left side of the page)

Thursday, June 15, 2006

SUNDAY: Wegmans Chili-Paul Demo

In our ongoing effort to reach people in a variety of locations around the Rochester area with our message about the cruelty at Wegmans Egg Farm, we will be demonstrating this Sunday, June 18th at the Wegmans Chili-Paul. It is a large store located at the intersection of Chili Avenue and Paul Road in the town of Chili, about 15 minutes Southwest of downtown Rochester.

Date: Sunday, 18 June
Time: 1:45 pm
Place: Wegmans Chili-Paul, 3175 Chili Avenue, Rochester

Everyone is welcome and encouraged to attend! Please make the drive out on Sunday - every single person who comes to the demonstration will help us get the word out to more people about how the egg industry mistreats animals for the sake of making a buck!

There are plenty of plazas to park in on other corners of the intersection, but as a reminder, please do not attempt to park on Wegmans property. The quickest way to get there from Rochester is by taking I-490 West to exit 5, Chili Center, and taking a left onto Chili Center Coldwater Road, and following it south for about a mile to the store location on Chili Ave.

John Annechino
Activist Liaison
Compassionate Consumers

Wednesday, June 14, 2006

Wegmans Cruelty and Adam Durand on Rochester Public Radio

Today Bob Smith's 1370 Connection show on WXXI radio in Rochester had Tom Proietti, a very interesting MCC media analyist who is on every few weeks. He said he had seen the film "Wegmans Cruelty," and talked about it in mostly positive terms for a couple of minutes. The show is replayed every night, so if anyone is interested in hearing it, that part should be on sometime tonight (Wednesday) between 9:30 and 10:00 PM on 1370AM.
El Paso Radio Interview with Ryan Merkley

The Tuesday, June 20 radio show "Animal Concerns of Texas" will feature an interview with Ryan Merkley, Campaign Coordinator for Compassionate Consumers. Ryan will discuss the ongoing campaign urging Wegmans to go cage-free and the current legal situation of Adam Durand. The show will be broadcast at 10:30 am Mountain Time (12:30 pm Eastern Time).

Date: Tuesday 20 June
Time: 12:30 pm EST

"Animal Concerns of Texas" is broadcast in El Paso on KTEP Public Radio.

Tuesday, June 13, 2006

Wegmans should have egg on its face
From The Rochester DISSIDENT: news, views, and poems from JACK BRADIGAN SPULA

Topic: agriculture, animals
Tuesday, 16 May 2006

Word just came that Adam Durand, one of the brave young folks who went into the Wegmans egg farm in Wolcott to film the industrial-strength abuse of some 700,000 laying hens there, has been sentenced to six months in the Wayne County jail for trespass.

The sentence is way out of line, and hopefully Durand won’t spend the whole time behind bars.

He was very recently found not guilty of several serious charges that the Wayne County DA brought against him – including burglary. These charges were more wildly pumped up than the one of trespass. But the jury apparently understood they were being given bit parts in a corporate show trial, directed by the DA. So they did the right thing and voted to acquit on all but the least serious charge.

Now the Wegmans gang must be crowing; they lost the show trial, but the judge came down hard on Durand, regardless. In the Rochester area, you don’t fool with Mother Unnatural.

Durand and his friends did nothing wrong; they acted morally and affirmatively. When going onto the farm, they didn’t damage property (in fact, they saved some, in the form of ailing hens they rescued). Their purpose was solely to document the horrors of “battery cage” husbandry methods – fowl crammed into tiny spaces, “de-beaked,” exposed to their own feces, kept isolated from earth and sun and prevented from engaging in natural social behavior.

But again, you put at least a chunk of your life and freedom on the line when you embarrass the likes of Wegmans, a company that polishes a squeaky-clean image even as the mountains of manure – chickenshit of the PR variety included – pile up.

My last official dealing with the Wegmans flack-farm occurred a few years ago. I was tracking the company’s plans for expanding the East Avenue store near Winton. It looks like the company is determined to bulldoze some old buildings (one of which is arguably historic) near the present store to make way for a new Big Box (and acres of parking space, too).

Here as elsewhere, the project may take time; even an 800-pound retailer can’t wear down the opposition all at once. But I predict Wegmans will get its way with East Avenue, if it hasn’t already. The corporate voice - a real cockadoodle-doo - sounds as loud in Monroe County as in Wolcott.
An HSUS Report: Welfare Issues with Cage and Cage-Free Egg Production:
A Review of Mortality

. . . Some proponents of battery cages claim that cage-free housing causes unacceptable mortality rates. For instance, Wegmans Food Markets officials have defended their use of cage systems by claiming, “Free-range chickens, exposed to the outdoors, have a normal mortality rate anywhere from 20 to 40 percent a year.”
. . .
In fact, normal mortality rates in free-range flocks are between 5 to 15 percent—less than the mortality rates in many molted, caged flocks. No scientific evidence exists to support the claim that flocks kept in barn aviaries have any higher mortality than flocks kept in cages, after controlling for breed and beak-trimming. Indeed, according to poultry welfare expert Dr. Joy Mench, a professor in the Department of Animal Science at the University of California, Davis, and a specialist who serves on advisory committees for both the United Egg Producers and McDonald’s [and Wegmans], “Mortality and disease rates can be similar under both systems if management is good.”

Monday, June 12, 2006

Another great demonstration led by Hannah and the Baltimore Animal Rights Coalition (BARC)!

"Here are some photos from yesterday's demos. BARC and I took a trip to NJ for the grand opening of a Wegmans. We're still looking for people to help out with the Northern VA demos, so please - message me if you're interested! Thanks!" -- posted @ WC's MySpace

Sunday, June 11, 2006

Friday, June 09, 2006

Flyers by N-J, The Vegan Filmmaker

Download them below! See the links!


This flyer is still useful though:
Wegmans Cruelty film flyer, full page -

1. Wegmans Cruelty film flyer, full page -

2. Support Adam full, single page flyer -

3. Support Adam full page front (1 of 2) -

Support Adam full page back (2 of 2)-

4. Support Adam half page front (1 of 2)-

Support Adam half page back (2 of 2)-

Thursday, June 08, 2006

The Ad that never ran.

Animal Rights International

In 2004, a small group of Rochester animal advocates visited retail chain Wegmans egg-factory in the middle of the night and filmed the horrendous conditions in which they kept their hens. After producing a widely viewed documentary, the film maker, Adam Durand was charged with felony burglary because he removed some critcally sick and dying birds for veterinary care. Shortly before Adam's trial, ARI submitted this ad to the Rochester Democrat and Chronicle to show Wegmans and others like them that if they tried to punish animal advocates for exposing abuses like those at Wegmans egg factory there would be consequences. The Democrat and Chronicle declined to run the ad citing the picture and saying it came too soon after the death of Wegmans founder Robert Wegman. The Democrat and Chronicle receives a lot of advertising fron Wegmans. ARI, assisted by People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals (Peta) sent out media releases which resulted in coverage by the New York Times and the Associated Press. Adam Durand was acquitted of felony burglary. Click on the ad for a full sized PDF version.

Egg on Wegmans Face

from Jeremy's Journal

Last year, I noticed protesters outside of the showcase Pittsford Wegmans, with signs directing people to wegmanscruelty.com. I dismissed them as a bunch of PETA-brained vegans looking for a big target to bring attention to their radical campaigns. I didn’t pay much attention to them, until I started hearing more on the news. . . .

I’ve always liked Wegmans, but this case bothers me. Wegmans was faced with some free speech that they didn’t like. Rather than simply counter with free speech, they pressured the legal system to give a severe sentence to one of their critics. Wegmans claims that “an intrusion like Durand’s could introduce pathogens — like avian flu — capable of wiping out whole flocks of the company’s birds”. Give me a break. Yes, we’re all scared of avian flu, but the plain fact of the matter is that Wegmans’ primary concern is with their corporate image. That’s what Durand attacked and that’s what Wegmans was lashing back against.

Because Wegmans took vindictive legal action instead of public relations action, I personally will not set foot in a Wegmans store until Adam is out of jail.
Commentary from the "Out of my Vegan Mind" blog.

Written by a 'a vegan who is a cardiologist-in-training.'
Eric's Diner Podcast

Judge Kehoe, Adam Durand, and Mister Rogers
This rare early morning podcast features my thoughts on anger and on Judge Kehoe's sentence of Adam Durand. For more on the Wegmans cruelty case, visit WegmansCruelty.com.
Compassion no crime

Contra Costa Times, CA
June 7, 2006

It's a sad commentary on our society's values when animal rescuer Adam Durand is thrown in jail for his "crime" of compassion, while those responsible for the abuse at Wegman's Egg Farm get off scot-free. ("Activist who filmed egg farm gets jail," May 16).

Durand is to be commended, not punished, for risking his freedom to protest institutionalized abuses. In doing so, he has joined a long list of social activists (think Mahatma Gandhi and Martin Luther King) who have used civil disobedience to affect social change.

The unfortunate fact is that the cruel battery-cage conditions Durand documented at Wegman's egg farm -- hens packed so tightly into wire cages that they are unable to even lift a wing, much less walk -- are standard on most U.S. egg farms. Although the factory farming industry has sought for years to shield consumers from the reality of factory egg farming, the public has a right to make informed decisions about their supermarket purchases.

Compassion is not a crime, and profits should not precede basic, humane principles. Instead of pushing to punish Durand, Wegman's should be gearing its energies toward instituting humane, cage-free conditions for their millions of miserable egg-laying hens.

Ariana Huemer

SATURDAY: Wegmans Greece Demo

On Saturday evening Compassionate Consumers will continue its weekly demonstrations while Adam is in jail; this time we're moving to a new location. Please join us to let Wegmans know that their attempts to silence Adam won't make the issue of animal cruelty go away!

Date: Saturday, 10 June
Time: 1:45 pm
Place: Wegmans Britton Rd., 3660 Dewey Ave., Greece, NY
Map: http://maps.google.com/maps?f=q&hl=en&q=3660+dewey+ave,+rochester+ny

Directions from the south:
* Take 390 North to exit 25
* Turn right onto Vintage Ln, then left (north) onto Dewey Ave
* 3660 Dewey Ave is just past Britton Rd.
* Please don't park in the Wegmans lot; there's a large plaza one block north, past English Rd.

Thursday, June 01, 2006

Trespasser due back in court

Rochester Democrat & Chronicle
(June 1, 2006)

Adam Durand, the Rochester man who was convicted last month of trespassing at Wegmans Wayne County egg farm in 2004 while filming conditions at the farm, will be back in court next week.

Durand is in the Wayne County Jail, serving a six-month sentence imposed May 16. He also was sentenced to $1,500 in fines, community service and a year of probation.

However, under state law, Durand cannot be required to serve both jail time and probation for his crimes.

The sentence received national attention, particularly among animal rights groups.

Wayne County District Attorney Richard Healy said Wednesday that he does not plan to make any sentencing recommendations when Durand returns to court Tuesday. Judge Dennis Kehoe will likely either vacate the jail time or the probation, Healy said.