An undercover investigation by an animal welfare group has found filthy and “inhumane” conditions at one of Costco Wholesale Corp’s major egg suppliers.
Footage collected by the Humane Society of the United States at a Hillandale Farms facility in Gettysburg, Penssylvania, by someone “associated with” the animal protection group showed egg-laying hens cramped in cages with some of them sitting on deceased birds that were apparently not removed.
“This is the type of inhumane, unhygienic and unsustainable practice that has no place in Costco’s egg supply chain,” Paul Shapiro, vice president of farm animal protection, said during a media conference call, adding the investigation found birds that were rotting away in the cages for so long that they had become “mummified corpses.”
"Nearly a decade has passed since Costco indicated it wanted to end such abuse in its supply chain, and these birds continue languishing, every minute of every day, in conditions so filthy it would make most people's stomachs churn," Shapiro stated.
The eggs, according to Humane Society are sold at a couple of Costco stores branded as "Nearby Eggs" in packages such as the one pictured below:
Costco announced in 2007 that it planned to move to cage-free eggs, but failed to do so.
The Humane Society has called on the American retailer to provide a timeline for its promised transition to cage-free eggs. Costco hasn’t responded to the reports yet.