Animal protection charity Compassion Over Killing (COK) released results of an investigation inside an egg factory farm owned by Michael Foods, one of the country’s largest egg producers and supplier of eggs to several national restaurant chains, including Dunkin’ Donuts. While employed at the facility in August, a COK investigator used a hidden camera to document conditions for hens at the farm, which houses more than one million caged birds.
Footage from inside Michael Foods shows hens immobilized in the wires of their cages, unable to access food or water; decomposing and “mummified” corpses left in cages with live birds; a Michael Foods employee decapitating a hen; and birds suffering from overcrowding, feather loss, and untreated injuries.
“No responsible company should support this animal cruelty,” says Erica Meier, COK’s executive director. “Dunkin’ Donuts can and should make the right decision by removing eggs from its doughnuts and offering more humane vegan menu items.”
Earlier this year, COK reached out to Dunkin Donuts inquiring about the treatment of hens in its supply chain and requesting the company to offer egg-free donuts. COK also launched a campaign website urging the company the make meaningful changes.
In a response to COK, Dunkin’ Donuts released the following statement: “Dunkin' Donuts requires our suppliers to adhere to all federal, state, local, and industry standards regarding safety, cleanliness, and animal welfare. As such, we are working closely with Michael Foods to investigate the accuracy and validity of the footage. All Dunkin’ Donuts egg suppliers must follow our corporate standards related to animal welfare and meet or exceed the United Egg Producers (UEP) guidelines, which ensure the proper treatment of laying hens used for egg production. We will continue to review all practices at Michael Foods and determine any appropriate next steps.”