Following an eyewitness investigation of hatcheries and poultry farms, including those in Andhra Pradesh, and after receiving numerous appeals from PETA India regarding the common poultry industry practice of killing male chicks (because they can’t lay eggs) and other unwanted chicks in apparently illegal ways, Dr M Srinivasa Rao, the director of animal husbandry of Andhra Pradesh, has issued an order to all district joint directors calling on them to look into the issues we raised and ensure that the necessary action is taken.
Between February and April 2016, an eyewitness visited hatcheries and farms housing chickens raised for meat (“broilers”) and for eggs (“layers”) in Andhra Pradesh and Telangana linked to Suguna Foods, SR Group, Skylark Hatcheries, SH Group, and Diamond Group. Many of these companies commonly kill chicks who are weak, male, or otherwise unwanted by grinding, crushing, burning, or drowning them – or even feeding them while still alive to fish.
In our appeals, we pointed out that common cruel methods of killing unwanted chicks apparently violate Section 11(1)(l) of The Prevention of Cruelty to Animals Act, 1960. We requested that the Department of Animal Husbandry and Dairying stop any cruel killing methods practised by poultry hatcheries in the state. We also asked that the government require that the egg industry use in ovo sex-determination technology as soon as it’s available and enforce a ban on the killing of male chicks immediately thereafter. This new technology – which was developed abroad and will be commercially available soon – will allow eggs with male embryos to be destroyed at an early stage of development and spare live chicks a horrific death.
According to the 2019 report on Basic Animal Husbandry Statistics released by the Ministry of Animal Husbandry, Dairying and Fisheries, Andhra Pradesh is one of the top egg-producing states in the country – making it especially imperative that its government implement in ovo sex-determination technology as soon as it’s available.
At PETA India’s request, the animal husbandry departments of Haryana, Madhya Pradesh, Maharashtra, and Uttar Pradesh have also issued similar orders directing an end to illegal and cruel practices for killing chicks.
Germany – which has invested €5 million (Rs 400 million) in developing sex-determination technology – as well as France and Switzerland have taken steps towards banning the shredding of live male chicks, which is commonly practised abroad.
You can help ensure these animals don’t suffer by choosing a cruelty-free lifestyle that will reduce the demand for animal-derived products.