Germany Becomes First Country to End Chick Shredding

Government will implement new technology to end the cruel standard practice by 2017.

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This week, Germany announced it will use technology to determine the sex of fertilized eggs before the animal inside develops, saving approximately 45 million male chickens from being ground alive or suffocated. Because egg-laying hens are a different breed of chicken than those produced for meat, male chicks are considered “byproducts” because they do not grow up to be egg-laying chickens, resulting in them being ground alive by both caged and free-range producers around the world. Agriculture Minister Christian Schmidt says hatcheries will start using the method in 2016 and hopefully be 100-percent in place by 2017. The change will add less than two cents to the cost of an egg.