Jaipur, India (20 July 2011)-The Director of Animal Husbandry for the
Government of Rajasthan has directed the state's veterinary officers, all
district SPCAs, and all district collectors to ensure that the state's egg
producers comply with the Animal Welfare Board of India's order to
immediately discontinue starvation force molting regimes.
the Animal Welfare Board of India confirmed that starvation force molting is
a punishable offence under India's Prevention of Cruelty to Animals Act of
1960, and ordered all egg production facilities to immediately discontinue
"We are grateful to the Government of Rajasthan and we
hope that egg laying farms comply with this order" said N.G. Jayasimha,
manager of HSI's factory farming campaign in India. "Egg producers who
continue to starve birds to induce molt must be prosecuted under the
Prevention of Cruelty to Animals Act."
HSI urges anyone with
information about a farm inducing molting by starvation to email this
confidential drop box:
Copies of the Administration's order are
available on request.
. Starvation force molting,
widely practiced on egg production facilities throughout India, deprives
egg-laying hens of food for up to 14 days and may be combined with one to
two days of water deprivation, in order to manipulate their egg laying
. During a forced molt, hens suffer greatly and may lose up to
35 percent of their body weight. This practice of food withdrawal has been
widely questioned throughout the world and is prohibited in Australia, the
European Union, and the United States, under the American egg industry's
animal husbandry program.
. Starvation force molting dramatically
increases the risk of hens' laying salmonella-infected eggs.
Committee to Monitor Animal Welfare Laws in Maharashtra has directed
Maharashtra's Department of Animal Husbandry, Dairy Development & Fisheries
to ensure that all egg producers and integrators discontinue starvation
. The Joint Secretary of Animal Husbandry and
Fisheries, Government of Karnataka, has directed all egg producers in the
state to discontinue starvation force molting.
. The Director of
Animal Husbandry for the Government of Goa has directed the state's
veterinary officers and the North and South Goa SPCAs to ensure egg
producers discontinue starvation force molting.
. The Chandigarh
Administration's Director of Animal Husbandry has requested state veterinary
officers, the SPCA, and People for Animals-Chandigarh to inspect all egg
laying farms and ensure compliance with the order against starvation force
. The order against starvation force molting comes on the
heels of a growing movement against battery cage egg production and farm
animal cruelty. India's factory farms confine 140 to 200 million hens in
barren battery cages, where each bird lives within a space smaller than a
single standard sized sheet of paper.
Media Contact: N.G.Jayasimha:
Humane Society International and its partner
organizations together constitute one of the world's largest animal
protection organizations-backed by 11 million people. HSI fights for the
protection of all animals through advocacy, education, and hands-on
programs. On the web at