How Farm Fresh Eggs Can Make a Difference

The Dirty Dozen

We're fighting for a more sustainable future, one egg at a time. When you purchase your eggs from MilkRun, you're supporting small farms, local producers, and most importantly -- happy, healthy hens. We believe each and every person has the power to make a difference through the simple act of choosing local eggs. To learn more about the current state of the egg industry, we'd like to introduce twelve facts we're calling: The Dirty Dozen.

Chicks never get to meet their mothers

This one breaks our hearts, and it’s precisely why we work with farmers who work hard to keep families together.

Learn morehere.

20,000 hens in one barn still count as free-range

Free-range hens are often cramped in giant barns with 20,000 or more other hens, never feeling the sun on their backs or the grass beneath their feet. MilkRun farmers let their birds roam free on vast pastures and utilize technology like mobile chicken coops when it’s time to roost.

Learn more hereandhere.

It doesn’t get worse than forced-molting

This is a process that involves starving the hens for about 18 days. They are kept in the dark and denied water, with the goal of expediting the egg-laying process. Forced molting is a hard no for us and for our farmers, so you can rest assured the chickens who lay your eggs will never be subjected to this horrific practice.

Free Range hens may never see the daylight

Though regulations state that hens must have access to an outside area, with thousands of birds often being kept in a single barn, tiny doors to the outside and no requirements for the farmer to actually open these doors, countless hens never see the light of day. Our farmers operate on lush pastures and let their birds live outdoors the way nature intended.

Learn more here andhere.

Fowl conditions abound on big factory farms

Industrial operations often stack cages several rows high, and a single shed can contain up to 100,000 hens. The result is air is filled with a haze of fecal dust and the lingering smell of ammonia. We believe each and every bird deserves the dignity of having space to roam, healthy food and plenty of fresh air.

Learn more here.

95 Percent of U.S. eggs come from caged birds

Approximately 95 percent of U.S. eggs come from hens kept in battery cages, which are widely acknowledged as inhumane. MilkRun farmers are among the small but mighty 5% who are committed to housing hens on open pastures where they can socialize, eat healthy diets and do all sorts of other chicken things. That means your eggs will always come from happy, healthy and humanely raised hens — and we promise they’ll be the best you’ve ever tasted!

Learn more here and here.

Caged hens can’t even open their wings

The average battery cage has less floor space than the surface area of an iPad. Even chickens living in “group cages” are packed in so tightly that they do not have enough space to extend their wings. That’s another reason MilkRun only sources from farmers who care enough to let these sweet animals roam free and spread their wings wide.

Learn more here and here.

Big is bad for the environment too

Up to half a pound of greenhouse gasses are produced for every industrial egg consumed. Aside from the large amounts of ammonia and carbon dioxide produced, the egg industry also uses harmful pesticides that pollute local waterways and the air. By keeping farms small and sustainable, eggs raised on MilkRun farms are key to a sustainable future.

Learn more here.

Industrial farms practice unnatural selection

The natural lifespan of a wild chicken can be anywhere from 7 to 20 years, but those used for industrial farming usually only live for 18 to 24 months. MilkRun farmers strive to provide their chickens long, happy and healthy lives filled with love, care and compassion for their well-being.

Learn more here.

Modified for quantity, not quality

Female chicks and hens are sent to egg farms for genetic manipulation and selective breeding that alters their natural biology so they can lay 250 to 300 eggs per year, compared to the only 10 to 15 eggs wild hens produce annualy. Our farmers wouldn’t dream of putting their hens through that inhumane treatment, and instead work with the birds natural way of life in order to meet production needs.

Learn more here.

Caged birds have no room to roam

At just 18 weeks olds, hens are placed in battery cages. Each one holds 5-10 birds, which means each one only has around 67 square inches of space to move. Compare that to the acres upon acres of lush green pictures upon which our chickens roam, and it’s clear why buying your eggs from a small local farmer is better for the birds, and for your family.

Learn more here.

The end is bitter for most industrially-raised birds

Once they’ve passed their prime production years, hens are sent to slaughter. Current laws allow transporters to travel up to 28 consecutive hours without stopping, during which time the hens are deprived of food and water, meaning many don’t even make it to the slaughterhouse. MilkRun farmers allow birds to live out their lives with dignity on the farm, and always use humane practices that offer comfort and compassion at the end of a bird’s life.

Learn more here.

Our mission is simple: Start small

"MilkRun makes it easy for every home in America to buy even just their eggs from a local farmer. Because we believe changing the world begins one neighborhood - and one egg - at a time."

- Julia Niiro, small farmer / founder