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What's Behind the $6.95 Pants and 3-Cent Eggs?

This is a followup for "Ultra-Capitalism Strikes Again" and "Ripped Off, Cut Off, Drove Off."

That's right, Steve and Barry's at the Carousel Center (and many other locations) currently has its entire store reduced to $6.95. That includes pants, shorts, sweaters, and even coats. A recent pair of pants I purchased was manufactured in Botswana. A previous pair was made in Malawi. Apparently African labor is even cheaper than that of the Pacific Islands, allowing for these ridiculous prices.

However, it's possible to have such cheap production in the United States too... Just not with people, but with chickens instead. Wegmans, the Rochester-based, growing super-regional supermarket chain is being accused of abusing its 750,000-plus chickens that live in cages on its chicken farm in Wolcott, New York. No, they don't whip them or anything, but instead force them to live in ridiculously overcrowded cages where they often get their heads stuck, fall and rot in manure, etc.

Wegmans 39-cent eggsTwo years ago Wegmans was chosen as the "Best Company to Work For" by Fortune Magazine (last year they ranked #2). This obviously doesn't apply if you're a chicken though. The result of the abuse? Wegmans can afford to have sales such as a dozen eggs for 39 cents. That's 3.25 cents an egg. Wegmans' excuse for continuing caged-hen farming is that otherwise their eggs would be too expensive for their customers.

Apparently Wegmans doesn't understand its market very well, namely that of the suburban middle-to-upper classes. Many of their stores are essentially resort destinations, offering products such as truffles for $399 per pound. Those customers not wishing to pay the extra dollar (if even) per dozen, can always visit Aldi or Save-A-Lot. In fact, they probably already do.

Wegmans Cruelty (I wouldn't visit around meal time)


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This page contains a single entry from the blog posted on April 8, 2006 3:07 PM.

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