Gordon Campbell | Parliament TV | Parliament Today | Video | Questions Of the Day | Search


Cruel hen cages move closer to phase-out

9 May 2006

Cruel hen cages move closer to phase-out

Hens have now been given a better chance to live out their egg-laying lives within more humane conditions, Green Party MP Sue Kedgley said.

"I am delighted that Parliament's Regulations Review committee has recommended to Government that the Layer Hen code be re-written, so that it complies with the Animal Welfare Act, and that a date be set for the phasing out of current layer hen cages.

"Effectively this will mean the industry now has to go back to the drawing board and devise a code that does comply with the Animal Welfare Act," Ms Kedgley said.

"It will also mean that the industry now finally has to set a date to phase out layer hen cages, instead of endlessly procrastinating on the issue.

"Hens can't even turn around in layer hen cages, or stretch their wings or express normal patterns of behaviour. It's a travesty that such cruel kinds of cages should be permitted at all under the Animal Welfare Act, and I am delighted that the committee had the courage to acknowledge that they don't comply."

Ms Kedgley, who sat on the Regulations Review hearings into a complaint from the Animal Rights Legal Advocacy Network about the layer hen code, said she was pleased the cross-party committee partially upheld the complaint, and recognised that the present Layer Hen code did not comply with the Animal Welfare Act.

"The committee noted that the existing layer hen cages do not comply with the principles of the Animal Welfare Act which require animals to be able to display normal patterns of behaviour," Ms Kedgley said.

"The committee agreed with the complainant that the Layer Hen code made unusual and unexpected use of the powers of the Animal Welfare Act, particularly in its interpretation of 'exceptional circumstances' that are beyond the intent of the Act.

"This important decision sends a clear message to the food production industries in New Zealand that they cannot continue to justify non compliance with the Act by claiming that the difficulties in phasing out their current non-complying activities - such as battery hen cages - can qualify as 'exceptional circumstances,' Ms Kedgley said.


© Scoop Media

Parliament Headlines | Politics Headlines | Regional Headlines

Veronika Meduna: The Kaikoura Rebuild

A Scoop Foundation Investigation

Friday will be a big day for people north of Kaikōura – and for hundreds of construction workers who are racing to reopen State Highway 1 in time for the holiday season.

By the afternoon, the South Island’s main transport corridor will be open to traffic again, more than a year after a magnitude 7.8 earthquake mangled bridges and tunnels, twisted rail tracks and buried sections of the road under massive landslides. More>>


BPS HYEFU WYSIWYG: Labour's Budget Plans, Families Package

“Today we are announcing the full details of the Government’s Families Package. This is paid for by rejecting National’s tax cuts and instead targeting spending at those who need it most. It will lift 88,000 children out of poverty by 2021." More>>


Gordon Campbell: On Defence Spending, Alabama, And Dolly Parton

The spending lavished on Defence projects to meet the risks that could maybe, possibly, theoretically face New Zealand in future is breath-taking, given how successive governments have been reluctant to spend even a fraction of those amounts on the nation’s actual social needs. More>>


Members' Bills: End Of Life Choice Bill Passes First Reading

The End of Life Choice Bill in the name of David Seymour has been sent to a select committee for consideration by 76 votes to 44. It is the third time Parliament has voted on the issue in recent decades and the first time such a Bill has made it over the first hurdle. More>>


State Sector: MPI Survives Defrag Of Portfolios

The Ministry for Primary Industries will not be split under the new government, but will instead serve as an overarching body for four portfolio-based entities focused on fisheries, forestry, biosecurity and food safety. More>>


Gordon Campbell: On Vulnerable Kids, RNZ Funding, And Poppy

The decision to remove the word ‘vulnerable’ from the Ministry for Vulnerable Children could well mark a whole shift in approach to the care of children in need... More>>





Featured InfoPages