Code 3

It is difficult to see from outside that there are animals living in these buildings. Each building of a spawning unit can contain tens of thousands of hens, stacked in narrow wire cages: Cage rows, one above the other, tens of feet long.

Density and conditions 16 hens per m²: The total area corresponding to each hen does not exceed one A4-sized page.


Crushed into the cage, one above the other, they cannot open their wings or move without being trampled. They stand on a wire floor that hurts their feet. Their bones are broken by the lack of sun exposure and immobility. Struggling for living space, they attack and cannibalize each other or their limbs are amputated.

The hens are sprayed with insecticide and fed with food mixed with antibiotics, in order to reduce mortality from the excessive concentration of bacteria and microbes caused by overcrowding.


International Healthcare Bodies have pointed out that the unexpected use and consumption of antibiotics poses a risk to public health, creating bacteria that are resistant to existing antibiotics. The risk is even greater, as egg producers use antibiotics that the World Health Organization has classified as 'back-up'.

The Fipronil Scandal

In 2017, the health scandal of egg contamination with the insecticide Fipronil broke out in Europe, revealing the illegal use of insecticides in hens. Fipronil is strictly forbidden to be used on animals for consumption, especially on hens.


The scandal of the infected eggs was the most serious health scandal in Europe since the horse meat case in 2013. According to EU official data, it affected a total of 45 countries, 26 of the 28 member states.


Infected eggs and egg products were found, among others, in the Netherlands, Belgium, Germany, Sweden, England, France, but also the US, Russia, Israel and Canada. Millions of eggs were removed and destroyed, poultry houses closed, while supermarket chains withdrew all their eggs and many egg-containing products from their shelves.