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Last Stand of the Rosebud Wolves?

Wolf Patrol

Wolf Tracks Off Mystic Wolf tracks coming out of the Absaroka-Beartooth Wilderness Area, Montana

On March 30, Wolf Patrol became aware of Montana and the federal government’s decision to lethally remove the Rosebud wolf pack, which roam the Beartooth Mountains, northeast of Yellowstone National Park. Wolves from the pack have been blamed for livestock depredations last year, as well as another this past January, and two cattle deaths on March 25, on a ranch just south of Roscoe, in Carbon County Montana. One of the Rosebud wolves was reportedly killed in early February, and two more wolves were captured and then killed with leg-hold snares set near the cattle carcasses on March 30, according to the USDA’s Wildlife Services.

Fersters Dead Cow One of two replacement heifers allegedly killed by the Rosebud wolves.

This month marks the end of the U.S. Fish & Wildlife Service’s oversight of Montana’s state management of wolves, which has included the annual…

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Video Surfaces of Christian Youth Group Throwing an Animal Against a Wall | PETA

Life or Lunch?

Scores of people are outraged, and now PETA is calling on Young Life—a Christian youth ministry—to ban the use of live animals in all of its groups’ activities. A disturbing viral Snapchat video recently surfaced that appears to show students in a local Katy, Texas, chapter of Young Life throwing live chickens around a room—even against a wall—in what they described as a “team-building exercise.” One of the chickens who was used has since died, and local authorities have opened an investigation into the incident.

These teenagers displayed a dangerous lack of empathy for others when they carelessly threw terrified chickens around like basketballs, and with schools across the country facing a bullying epidemic, it’s even more important that anyone who works with youth take measures to prevent such callous…

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Why It’s Taking Companies So Long To Switch To Cage-Free Eggs


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Why It’s Taking Companies So Long To Switch To Cage-Free Eggs
Subway is the latest food chain to give itself a generous 10-year deadline.
12/28/2015 12:08 pm ET | Updated Dec 28, 2015

Alexander C. Kaufman
Senior Business Editor, The Huffington Post

At the world’s largest fast-food chain, ending the use of eggs laid by caged hens will be a 15-year process.

Subway said Monday that it will switch its entire supply over to cage-free eggs by 2025. The announcement makes the sandwich giant the largest restaurant yet to adopt the 10-year deadline, which was thrust into the spotlight after McDonald’s made an identical pledge in September.

Subway said five years ago that it would phase out the use of eggs from caged hens, but didn’t offer any timeline for when it would make the switch. The new announcement, which will affect the company’s roughly 30,000 locations in the United States and Canada, offers a firm deadline, albeit a generous one.

“Subway customers across Europe are served only eggs from free range hens and in Australia are served eggs from cage free hens,” Elizabeth Stewart, director of corporate social responsibility at Subway, said in a statement. “Major menu changes like this take time, but we will keep our customers updated every step of the way as we work diligently with our suppliers to reach our goals. As more and more chains come on board with their commitment we want customers to remember you have ours.”

Other big food companies have set more aggressive deadlines. Last week, Nestlé, the world’s biggest food producer, pledged to use cage-free farms to supply the 20 million pounds of eggs it uses in items sold in the U.S. in just five years. Starbucks and Panera — one of Subways’ fiercest rivals in the sandwich space — have both vowed to go cage-free by 2020.



Smiler chains have adopted even more aggressive targets. Taco Bell promised last month to use only cage-free eggs at its nearly 6,000 North American locations by next year. Bakery chain Au Bon Pain, which has slightly more than 300 outlets worldwide, vowed in 2013 to eliminate eggs from caged hens from its supply chain by 2017.

Subway’s pledged deadline falls in line with other major restaurant chains like TGI Fridays and Jack in the Box, and with food producers like General Mills and Kellogg.

So, why such a long timeline for making the change?

The problem may be that there simply aren’t enough eggs laid by cage-free hens. Just 4.5 percent of the nearly 7.5 billion eggs produced in the U.S. in September came from cage-free hens, according to the industry group United Egg Producers.

“These commitments from players like McDonald’s or Nestlé are really more about signaling to the egg industry that it’s time to retrofit all the barns and switch over production to cage-free eggs,” David Coman-Hidy, executive director at the animal welfare nonprofit The Humane League, told The Huffington Post by phone on Sunday. “That time has come.”

Companies like Nestlé — which uses eggs in its Lean Cuisine breakfast dishes and Toll House cookie dough — can switch to cage-free eggs more quickly because they can swap other ingredients for eggs in baking recipes. At McDonald’s or Subway, where eggs are irreplaceable in breakfast sandwiches and flatbreads, converting the supply chain would probably require price hikes on the menu to offset the cost of more expensive eggs. Each year, McDonald’s purchases about 2 billion eggs in the U.S. and 120 million in Canada. Subway did not immediately respond to questions about how many eggs it uses.

Hens that lay eggs in squalid battery cages cannot spread their wings or even walk around. But cage-free eggs are not necessarily cruelty-free. Cage-free farms can still keep hens crowded into dark, windowless barns. Common industry practices allow for cage-free birds to have their beaks clipped or be forced through starvation to shed their feathers.
The Humane Society

But vague rules around what is required to call something a free-range or pastured egg make cage-free eggs the most humane solution to scale in a big way.

“It’s measurable and easy to confirm without a really strenuous auditing process,” said Coman-Hidy, who worked at Subway when he was 13 and has campaigned for cage-free eggs since college. “A farm either uses battery cages or it doesn’t, there’s no wiggle room.”

Coman-Hidy said the next step for the cage-free movement will be lobbying supermarket chains to eliminate all but cage-free eggs from their shelves.

“People are against cages and overwhelmingly vote to ban them when given a choice,” Coman-Hidy said. “It’s time for supermarkets to reflect that.”

But that change, as with any other in the egg industry, will take time.

“We’re hoping to see change in the coming year or two,” Coman-Hidy said. “In a big way.”

Also on HuffPost:
These Chains Are Switching To Cage-Free Eggs
More: Battery Cages Cage Free Eggs Subway Cage-free Eggs Cage-free Eggs 10 Years Subway



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