'Conveyor belt of death for chicks' claim

CAMPAIGNERS yesterday released undercover footage of a "conveyor belt to death" for male baby chicks killed as part of the egg production industry.

Vegetarian organisation Viva! said 30 million to 40 million male chicks were killed each year by gassing or being thrown into electric mincers shortly after they hatch because they are the wrong sex to lay eggs.

The covert footage, captured at two English hatcheries, shows the chicks on conveyor belts, with the males being sorted from the females, which go on to become laying hens.

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Viva! wants people to stop buying eggs, claiming that while the welfare of the laying hens varies, almost all male chicks born into the egg industry suffer the same fate.