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About an hour's drive from Ivan's farm, Lisa and John visit a farm that raises its hens in the more conventional way—in cages and indoors. This single farm produces more than 80 times as many eggs as Ivan's farm. That's more than 500,000 eggs a week! "Over 95 percent of the eggs that are consumed in this country come from production like you're seeing here," John says.

Before they enter the building that houses the laying hens, Lisa and John are required to put on sanitation suits to protect both themselves and the birds from disease. When they step inside, Lisa says she is struck by the unbelievable smell of 87,000 chickens under one roof. There are about six birds inside each cage, and the cages are stacked to the ceiling. John explains that this is to allow for laid eggs to roll out onto a belt.

"Clearly, the farms couldn't be more different," Lisa says. "In the caged facility, it was eye-opening to see six chickens in one small cage. ... And this is their entire lives."
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FROM: Lisa Ling Reports: How We Treat the Animals We Eat
Published on October 14, 2008

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