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Brad Pitt Defends Hens Against Costco

Brad Pitt Defends Hens Against Costco
Brad Pitt Keith Baggett / Flickr CC BY-ND 2.0


Brad Pitt Defends Hens Against Costco

Wholesale retail giant Costco has a new protester when it comes to the origins of the cartons of eggs they are selling. He just happens to be Brad Pitt. This comes after other celebrities such as Ryan Gosling and Bill Maher have appealed to Costco Wholesale Corporation to stop selling eggs that are coming from suppliers who cruelly confine their hens in very small cages.

In his letter, the Hollywood actor stated that he is sending the said email to Costco’s Chief Executive Officer Craig Jelinek in behalf of the Farm Sanctuary as well as other animal supporters all over the U.S. His plea is really quite simple – he just wants Costco to sell cage-free eggs exclusively instead of getting eggs from suppliers who cage their hens.

Moreover, the “Fury” star called out Costco for not making appropriate changes given a timeline the company had committed to several years ago. He pointed this out in his letter, stating, “Nearly a decade ago, Costco indicated that its next step on this issue would be creating a timeline for getting those cages out of your egg supply, and yet today, you appear to have made no progress at all—even as you have set timelines for getting pigs and calves out of cages.”

According to, Costco has issued a statement in the past saying, “We want all of the hogs throughout our pork supply chain to be housed in groups…and expect that this transition should be accomplished no later than 2022. All of us at Costco take animal welfare seriously and consider humane animal handling a business imperative.”

Moreover, the website has also found that there are as much as 15 studies linking cage-free housing with food safety. In fact, the said studies have found that there are higher rates of salmonella found in egg-laying hens inside a cage housing.

In his letter, the Oscar-winning actor also detailed the cruelty of keeping hens in cages. He wrote, “As you know, these birds producing eggs for your shelves are crammed five or more into cages that are not large enough for even one hen to spread her wings. In these cruel cages, the animals’ muscles and bones atrophy from years of immobilization. That’s why the cages are illegal in most of Europe, and why California banned the cages by an overwhelming vote years ago. In short, cramming hens into cages for their entire lives constitutes cruelty to animals, and animals deserve better.”

He also pointed out that big corporations such as Burger King and Unilever are actively getting rid of cages whereas retailer Whole Foods “hasn’t sold eggs from caged hens in years.” So if you think about it, it only makes sense that Costco would be capable of following suit.

In the letter, the actor and father also took the time to give positive comment to Costco while emphasizing his request. He wrote, “I admire Costco’s many positive social commitments. You’ve shown great courage and integrity on a range of issues. Won’t you please extend that sensibility—and basic decency—to chickens?”

And since Brad Pitt is not just a man of words, but also a man of action, he believes in ensuring a proper timeline is set. At the end of his letter, he wrote, “Please, will you set a reasonable timeframe to stop selling eggs from caged hens? Thank you very much for your time and thoughtful consideration. I look forward to your response.”

About Jennifer Ong

Jennifer Ong has been covering and writing stories since 1998. Over the years, she has worked on stories on business, health, lifestyle, entertainment and travel. She has also previously written shows for television. When she's not on the job, she enjoys wine and Formula 1.

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