Eggs, glorious eggs, hot tofu and cheese, while we're in the mood...yes, the theme to that catchy song from "Oliver" should be playing as I muse about eggs.
It's true, as a vegetarian - not a vegan - eggs are the wonderful answer to my protein needs and I am sure I eat more than the recommended weekly allowance. The only thing I think I like more are the incredible salad sandwiches that George makes for me.
But I digress as the important issue here is eggs.
I finally learned from Trader Joe's what is means when their egg cartons say "cage free."
"That the birds are not kept in cages. They are held in warehouse-sized enclosures with free access to food and water. There are no hormones, antibiotics are used to treat specific illnesses and they are fed an all-vegetarian diet."
The question that I don't have an answer to is whether these enclosures are better or worse than other ways of keeping hens and whether it give the birds a better life. Do they fight more in such an enclosure (it's not called a pecking order for nothing) or do they get to dance about making friends and enemies the way they would in a barnyard?
What I am hoping is that someone out there know the answers to these questions.
We can read every Web site about egg farms - the horror of some of these places is unspeakable - but what about the places that try hard to make life easier for the little layers?
I don't want to give up eggs. But I do hope someone can help with this conundrum: does cage free go far enough?