Skip navigation - go directly to content.Eat Wild - The Clearinghouse for Information about Pasture-Based Farming

News Bulletins:     Nutrition     Animal Welfare     Environment      Farmers

Shop for Local Grassfed Meat,
Eggs & Dairy
Shop for Books
& Kitchen Tools
Notes & News
Grass-Fed Basics
Fruits & Vegetables
Food Safety
Healthier Animals
Environmental Benefits
Benefits for Farmers
Health Benefits
Meet Jo Robinson
How to Donate
Scientific References







From the News Archives...

In 1956, scientist finds health problems in chickens raised in confinement (12/16/00)

The trend toward factory farming was just gaining momentum when Hugh Sinclair, a respected British scientist, made the following pronouncement: "There are good and bad chickens. I am in favor of the backyard hen, but I am not so certain about the battery-fed hen."

Sinclair based his remarks on a "simple experiment" he conducted in the summer of 1956. He gathered fertile eggs from free-range hens and from hens raised in confinement. When the eggs hatched, he examined the day-old chicks. He found unhealthy fatty deposits in the aortas of the chicks hatched from factory eggs but none in the chicks from the free-range birds. Next, he raised some of the chicks from the free-range birds in a confinement setting and some on a free-range farm. At maturity, none of the free-range birds had fatty streaks, but the birds raised in confinement had a significant amount of fatty deposits.

Sinclair attributed the better health of the free-range birds to their more natural diet, which included seeds, greens, insects, and earthworms---foods rich in essential fatty acids, especially the omega-3s.

Sinclair, H. (1960). "Essential Fatty Acid Content of Hens' Eggs." The Lancet January 28, 1961.


Return to News Archives


Pasture Perfect
by Jo Robinson

Learn more
or order now

Home | Grassfed Basics | Eatwild Store | Meet Jo | Notes & News| Food | Resources | Site Map | Contact | Support