Humane Society International / Mexico

Vivian Argüelles/HSI Cage-free hens in Mexico

MEXICO CITY—Friday, October 11, is World Egg Day, and Humane Society International, one of the world’s largest animal protection organizations, wants to draw the attention of Mexicans to the reality of egg production – in Mexico and globally – and inform consumers how they can help improve the welfare of millions of hens. Watch our World Egg Day video.

Around the world, more than 7 billion hens are raised per year. Mexico is the fourth largest egg producer in the world with 156 million laying hens.

In Mexico, the vast majority of hens spend their entire lives crammed in metal cages, where they cannot stretch their wings or walk. The space per hen in these cages is less than a letter-sized sheet of paper, and the restriction is so severe that hens usually develop abnormalities in their bones due to their inability to move, and experience stress and frustration by not being able to perform their natural behaviors.

Hens are sentient, intelligent and sociable animals. Scientific studies have shown that they can count; they anticipate the future, which in turn affects their decision-making; they empathize with their chicks; and they enjoy social activities such as dust-bathing.

Vivian Argüelles, animal behavior and welfare specialist for HSI/Mexico, said, “In the wild, chickens spend their day scratching and pecking the ground in search of food. They dust-bathe to keep their feathers clean and healthy. They look for different places to  lay their eggs, and at night they sleep on tree branches to keep themselves protected from predators. In cages, hens cannot do any of these things.”

Several countries have totally or partially banned the use of cages for egg-laying hens, including the members of the European Union, Bhutan, India and New Zealand. In the United States, several states, such as California and Washington, have passed their own bans.

“In recent years, growing concern about and the rejection of the intensive confinement of egg-laying hens have mobilized companies, governments, universities and organizations to develop and implement alternatives that offer better welfare conditions to these animals,” Argüelles said.

Among the alternatives available in the Mexican market, there are cage-free production systems, where hens live in closed sheds and have nests in which to lay their eggs, elevated perches where they can rest, litter to scratch, peck and dust-bathe and enough space to walk, stretch their wings and fly. In free-range systems, hens also have access to an outside area where they can exercise, sunbathe and receive greater stimulation from their environment.

In Mexico, cage-free eggs are already available in supermarkets, and dozens of companies in the food industry have  made commitments to buy only cage-free eggs in their supply chains by 2020, 2022 or 2025 at the latest. These companies include Grupo Bimbo, Toks, CMR, McDonalds and 100% Natural, to name a few.

Humane Society International works with food industry companies on the adoption and implementation of their cage-free policies and with poultry farmers to achieve a successful transition. The shift towards systems of greater animal welfare will continue, as  more consumers say, “No” to cages and, if they consume eggs, choose cage-free.


Media contact: Laura Bravo,, 04455 54556 1476

About Humane Society International
Humane Society International and its partner organizations together constitute one of the world’s largest animal protection organizations. For more than 25 years, HSI has been working for the protection of all animals through the use of science, advocacy, education and hands on programs. Celebrating animals and confronting cruelty worldwide – on the Web at

Humane Society International / Mexico

Cage-free hens
Michelle Riley/The HSUS

VERACRUZ—The Mexican diner chain La Parroquia de Veracruz announced its new commitment to animal welfare, pledging to source only cage-free eggs in its egg supply chain by 2025. With 32 restaurants in Mexico, the company worked with Humane Society International on the adoption of this policy, and will continue to work with the organization to complete the transition to a 100% cage-free egg supply chain at all its locations, improving the animal welfare standards of the product as well as the economic sustainability of all their processes.

Marcelino Fernández Rivero, CEO  of La Parroquia de Veracruz, stated: “We are proud to offer our customers higher quality products by joining the cage-free egg movement. La Parroquia de Veracruz has corporate social responsibility policies on different issues, and it is a great pleasure for us to work to improve animal welfare in order to achieve a more responsible supply chain.”

Vivian Argüelles, animal behavior and welfare specialist for HSI/México, stated: “We congratulate La Parroquia de Veracruz for its commitment to only serve cage-free eggs in all its restaurants by 2025, and we are looking forward to working with them to ensure that the commitment is implemented. More and more corporations are adopting responsible consumption procurement policies, specifically with respect to cage-free eggs, and we invite other Mexican companies to follow this initiative.”

La Parroquia de Veracruz joins hundreds of other leading food companies committed to switching to cage-free eggs in Mexico and other regions around the world.

This commitment will improve the lives of thousands of egg-laying hens in Mexico. Conventional production systems in the country keep hens confined for their entire lives in wire cages so small they cannot even fully stretch their wings or carry out their natural behaviors. Common sense and science tell us that immobilizing animals for their lifetime in cages results in significant stress and physical pain.


Media contacts

Humane Society International: Laura Bravo, 55 5456 1476,,,

Humane Society International / Mexico

IZAMAL—For the fourth consecutive year, the cruelty-free Fiesta de San Bartolo replaced Kots Kaal Pato, the brutal Yucatan ritual of stringing up animals inside piñatas and beating them to death or cutting off their heads. Humane Society International/Mexico has been working on the ground with local partners for several years now to help the community embrace a cultural change in favor of the humane treatment of animals. Through humane education and by offering alternative activities, animals are no longer victims of cruelty in the name of “entertainment.”

Felipe Marquez, HSI/Mexico animal protection expert, said: “Cruel festivities in which different kinds of animals are abused take place on a regular basis across Mexico. Ensuring the humane transformation of the Izamal fiesta is vital to proving that traditions can evolve as societies’ values become more considerate and compassionate.”

Replacing what used to be one of the cruelest festivals in Mexico, Fiesta de San Bartolo has become a family celebration, promoting sports and games such as “Carreras Argentinas,” in which young people ride bikes while trying to get prizes hanging from a wire in the main plaza.

By continuing to work with the people and authorities of the community Citilcum in Izamal, HSI/Mexico hopes that this annual event will remain cruelty-free into the future.


Media contact (en español): Magaly Garibay, 55 5407 0502,

Humane Society International / Mexico


Mexico City—To mark World Spay Day, teams of volunteer veterinarians spayed and neutered 531 cats free of charge in Mexico City. The campaign was executed at local veterinary clinic Cemegatos with support from Humane Society International/Mexico. This is the first time the campaign surpases the 500 cats benchmark. The campaign ran Feb. 21 to Feb. 24 and involved 21 veterinarians and over 30 volunteers.

Dr. Claudia Edwards, DVM, HSI/Mexico programs director, said: “Spay-neutering is critical to address the street cats problem. People often misunderstand cats and have prejudices against them, but they are the most extraordinary pets. Cats need to be included in humane population control campaigns accessible to people without the means to pay for this service.”

World Spay Day reminds us of the power of affordable, accessible spay/neuter services to save the lives of companion animals, community (feral and stray) cats and street dogs who might otherwise be put down in shelters or killed on the street. Spay/neuter is also adviseable for pets to keep them healthy and to avoid unwanted offspring. Mexico has an acute street cat and dog problem, with an estimated 23 million free roaming cats and dogs.

Media contact: Magaly Garibay, (+52 55) 5211 8731, ext. 104,

Humane Society International

Humane Society International / Mexico

Aguascalientes, Mexico–More than 70 dogs are now on their way to better lives after their rescue from a case of neglect in Aguascalientes, Mexico, at the end of last month. The animals were living together in poor health and cramped conditions in the house of an elderly person.

The dogs were seized in an operation conducted by the Aguascalientes Environmental Attorney General Office, with support from Humane Society International/Mexico and local organization Amigos Pro-Animal. Rescuers took the animals to a temporary shelter to receive veterinary care, proper food and eventually to be adopted out. Local health authorities will monitor and provide health support to the elderly gentleman.

Felipe Márquez, manager of the HSI/Mexico program against animal cruelty, said: “Unfortunately, this is the kind of story we encounter rather frequently. Well-intentioned people try to help stray animals by picking them up, without considering the real implications of this action. Soon they find themselves in an unmanageable situation. However, thanks to the timely response and team work of APA, HSI and PROESPA, these dogs will have a second chance in life after all.”

Aguascalientes animal welfare legislation requires that animals have access to food and water, are provided with suitable and clean living conditions, receive basic health care and are not subject to abuse or ill treatment.


Media contact: Magaly Garibay, (+52 55) 5211 8731, ext. 104,

Humane Society International / Global


Billions of farm animals suffer in factory farms globally, confined their whole lives to cages so small they can barely move. HSI works with governments, corporations, producers and institutions to enact reform, end intensive confinement farming and promote alternatives to inhumane farming practices.

Humane Society International

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