FACTORY FARMING IN NEW ZEALAND
• 90 million chickens are killed annually for their meat.
• Up to 40,000 chickens are confined together inside large windowless sheds at a stocking density of 19 birds per square metre.
• Nearly 3.5 million chickens die annually from of health problems before six weeks of age.
• 38 per cent of New Zealand’s chickens experience difficulties walking.
• broiler chickens are reared to their slaughter weight of around 1.8 to 3 kg within just 6 weeks of being hatched (chickens are normally fully grown by 5-6 months). By selective breeding, the length of time broiler chicks take to grow to 2 kg has been halved in the last 30 years.
• Over the last 20 years, annual chicken consumption has increased from 14kg (1986) to an average 35kg of chicken meat per person per year.
• Sows confined in sow stalls cannot perform most of their natural behaviour, as is required under the Animal Welfare Act 1999. They cannot walk or turn around, and can only lie down or stand up.
• Sow stalls have been banned in the United Kingdom and Sweden and are being phased out in Finland, Switzerland, the Netherlands and Denmark.
• The government acknowledged in 2005 that sow stalls did not meet the obligations of the Animal Welfare Act 1999, but despite this they did not ban their use.
• Approximately 45 per cent of the sows farmed in New Zealand (about 21,000 animals) are confined to sow stalls the same size as those seen on the Sunday programme. Alternatively, to sow stalls only 60 cm wide and 2 meters long.
• Scientific evidence shows that pigs kept in intensive farms suffer from psychological distress, frustration, lung and heart disease, leg problems and lameness, and display stereotypic behaviour such as bar biting.
• In 2007 there were about 370,000 pigs kept on New Zealand farms, including nearly 47,000 breeding sows.
• A battery hen lives for about 18 months. The natural life span of a hen is typically five to seven years, but some can live as long as 15 years.
• In New Zealand there are 3.2 million egg-laying chickens. About 83 percent of these are in cages. The rest are kept in indoor barns or on free range farms.
• A battery hen lays nearly 300 eggs per year, while its wild ancestor would lay only 12-20.
• A battery cage is too small for a hen to carry out basic behaviour, such as stretch her wings and preen. For this a hen needs about three times the 550 square centimetres
typically provided for her in a battery cage.
• Battery hens may suffer from brittle and broken bones, foot deformities, feather loss and injuries due to pecking from cage mates.
• Male chicks are not required by the egg industry. About 3 million one-day-old male chicks are killed each year by gassing or masceration.