I am thrilled to share the news that our close friend and colleague, Clare Druce, has a new book published; Chickens’ Lib. It is beautifully written and a compelling read.
Clare puts factory farming under the microscope and comes up with a startling truth. Ministers of the Crown, farmers, poultry scientists and industrialists — they all routinely promote animal husbandry systems that are inherently illegal. Her case is that they fail to ensure each and every chicken in a factory farm of thousands receives sufficient time and attention to ensure their wellbeing. It is, after all, quite common to see, including from undercover investigations, sick, diseased, dying, and dead chickens in battery cages, including barren, and on deep litter. She also highlights the intensive farming industry’s fundamental reliance on the pharmaceutical industry. The recurring theme in the book is the author’s belief in the urgent necessity to put the illegality of factory farming to the test in a court of law.
Clare’s book is a fascinating history of Chickens’ Lib, which later became known as Farm Animal Welfare Network. Initially, they concentrated on the battery hen but they later campaigned on behalf of all poultry, from quail to ostriches, and then other farmed animals too, though poultry always remained our main focus.
I agree with Clare when she writes in her conclusion that:
‘Within the European Union, and elsewhere too, legislation is in place to protect farmed animals. Now the pressing need is to ensure that those laws are enacted. But that step, though highly significant, should represent nothing more than a beginning.’
Chickens’ Lib is available from Bluemoose Books.