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MPs Urged to Show Support for British Chickens

Hugh Fearnley-Whittingstall’s Chicken Out! Campaign has turned their attention to the power of Britain’s MPs, asking them to show support for fairer labelling of british supermarket chickens. Hugh has famously been campaigning for better conditions and clearer labelling for standard chickens supplied in supermarkets, and a number of TV programmes have shown his progress as well as the problems he has come up against, from results of revised labelling of standard chicken sold by the Co-operative, to the very unco-operative Tesco.

The latest push for Chicken Out! is to propose an Early Day Motion, which is a formal motion submitted for debate in the House of Commons that MPs can show support for by signing. EDM 581 aims to highlight the issue of chicken welfare and bring about a change in law regarding labelling of chicken sold in supermarkets. Head of Campaigns at Compassion in World Farming, Lasse Bruun has commented,

“We’re delighted that there is an Early Day Motion calling for honest labelling of chicken meat. Unfortunately supermarkets are getting away with misleading labels while the consumers are increasingly concerned about where our food comes from.”

To date, 168 MPs, that’s 25% of MPs across the UK, have shown their support for chickens by signing the Early Day Motion. Hugh is asking the British public to push their local MPs to do the same by adding their signatures to the list. You can find out whether your MP has signed the EDM on the Chicken Out! website and help the campaign reach their 300 signature target.

Posted in Environmental PoliticsFood and FarmingGreen Planet
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A Step Closer to The Good Life – the popularity of chickens

Chicken seems to be flavour of the month for many urban dwelling Americans at the moment, and according to The Globe and Mail, Vancouver is fast on the way to becoming the next place where keeping chickens is high on the agenda.

The city council has approved plans to allow people to keep chickens in the city, which will mean fresh eggs and the enjoyment of keeping animals (and increasing that sense of self sufficiency) will be a welcome addition to many families’ lives. Until now it has been illegal for people to keep chickens in their back yards, and many people feel this will be a great way for people to make a connection with the environment and a return to the more traditional ways of obtaining food.

The move to legalise keeping chickens in the city has received its share of opposition however, with comments being received from both the B.C. Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals and the British Columbia Poultry Association warning that the move may send out the wrong message to people who then take on chickens without considering the practicalities and responsibilies involved, such as caring for them in general, housing, dealing with illness and ensuring safety from predators. City Councillor Andrea Reimer who proposed the plans in the first place argues however that anybody who has kept dogs or cats would be capable of learning to care for chickens.

Posted in Green LivingSelf-Sufficiency
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