Is Chick Culling Legal?


Unwanted male chicks are killed shortly after birth through a variety of methods (maceration is the most common).

If you’ve ended up on this page, you already know what chick culling looks like, so I’m not going to link to a morbid video of it.

It’s a disturbing process, and yet, chick culling is entirely legal, even in places like the U.K. and U.S.

Why Are Male Chicks Killed Instead of Raised?

I’m not entirely sure it’s a better option, but you might wonder why male chicks aren’t just raised for meat.

Long ago they would have been, but now, different breeds of chickens are used for egg laying or to be raised for meat.

They’ve been bred to maximize production, which means that male chicks from egg-laying hens are not profitable enough to be raised for meat.

Will Chick Culling Ever Stop?

While the egg industry has many other issues with it in terms of how animals are treated, chick culling in Western countries may become less common soon.

While it’s just an estimate, some producers have predicted they’ll have the technology to identify males before hatching by as soon as 2020, so they can be culled as early as possible. 

There will still be a recognizable embryo, but still, it’s not quite as bad?

Bottom line is that chick culling doesn’t seem like it will become illegal in the foreseeable future, so the best we can do is hope for a “better” process.

About the author

Dale Cudmore

Your friendly neighborhood vegan from Toronto. Chemical engineer turned semi-professional soccer player and freelance nutrition writer. I've been vegan for years and try to make life easier for others by sharing what I've learned.

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