Retailers Cut Ties With Egg Farm

LITCHFIELD, Minn. — Several retailers have ended their relationships with the egg supplier Sparboe Farms here after the animal rights group Mercy For Animals released an undercover video this month showing poor treatment of chickens at Sparboe facilities in Iowa, Minnesota and Colorado.

McDonald's will no longer be accepting Sparboe eggs through the direct supplier Cargill, according to a statement by McDonald's Vice President of Sustainability Bob Langert.

Other retailers followed McDonald's example. Supervalu [3] and Lund Food Holdings [4]' chains Lunds and Byerly's have also ended their relationships with Sparboe, according to a report by the Minneapolis Star Tribune. In addition, The Associated Press reported that Target Corp. [5] will stop sourcing eggs from Sparboe.

“Supervalu requires that each of our suppliers act in accordance with all food safety and animal welfare regulations, and we're very concerned with the reported violations by Sparboe Farms,” Supervalu's National Media Manager Mike Siemienas said in a prepared statement.

The video comes after the U.S. Food and Drug Administration issued a warning to Sparboe earlier this month, finding violations of the “Prevention of Salmonella enteritidis (SE) in Shell Egg During Production, Storage, and Transportation regulation” at five facilities in Iowa, Colorado and Minnesota.