Beak trimming is performed when a pullet is 10 days old or less using a specialized instrument designed to simultaneously cut and cauterize the beak. Beak treatment is performed at the hatchery on the day pullets hatch. Infrared technology is used to blunt the pullets beaks. In both instances, only a few millimeters of the beak is trimmed.
UEP recommends beak trimming/treatment only when necessary to prevent feather pecking and cannibalism. When necessary for hen well-being, it must be carried out by trained personnel using procedures approved by the American Veterinary Medical Association (AVMA) and monitored regularly for quality control.
Learn more by viewing this video on beak treatment from the Coalition for Sustainable Animal Agriculture.
Advantages of beak trimming/treatment may include reduced feather pecking, reduced feather pulling, reduced cannibalism, better feather condition, less fearfulness, less nervousness, less chronic stress, and decreased mortality. For more information on the UEP Certified guidelines for beak trimming/treatment, visit UEP Certified Cage-Free Guidelines.