February 16, 2005 Update

Dear BSA Member:
As many of you may, or may not, know, this past week has presented more potential problems for those of us shipping poultry across the country.
Delta Airlines has made the decision to take no “Transfer” mail. Transfer mail consists of mail which Delta would carry from point A to point B and then have to transfer to point C. It is our understanding that they still will carry mail from point A to B (there was no transfer involved).
US Air and American had their postal contracts terminated by the USPS because their service was unacceptable. Both airlines want to continue to have contracts and the USPS is in negotiation with them at this time.
Our lobbyist has indicated to us he should be able to give us an update at the end of this week and we will pass it on at that time. This is very crucial time in our industry. If you have not paid your membership fees yet please consider doing so.
Sincerely,
Murray McMurray
Chairman

August 17, 2004 Shipping Update

As we know, bird shippers have been subject to an air carrier standard that birds will not be shipped if the temperature on the tarmac reaches 85 degrees F for four hours. As BSA has explained to airline personnel and officials of the United States Postal Service (USPS), such a standard was adopted under the Animal Welfare Act for the shipment of cats and dogs and should not apply day-old chicks. BSA has provided such opinions from a professor at the University of Georgia as well as the (then) Deputy Administrator of Veterinary Services of the Animal, Plant and Health Service (APHIS) of the U.S. Department of Agriculture. Unfortunately, airline officials have not seen fit to acknowledge this fact in their shipping policies and the USPS has taken the legal position that it cannot (read: “will not”) require the air carriers to adopt a different policy.
In order to conclusively demonstrate that the standard is inappropriate to the shipment of day-old chicks, BSA commissioned a study on the subject. That study was undertaken by personnel at the Department of Biology at Austin College in Texas and the Cooperative Extension Service at the University of California-Davis. The study is now completed and will be published in a peer reviewed professional journal in the near future. The Executive Summary of the study states:
This study was undertaken to determine the survivability of recently hatched chicks while in transit considering the variances in temperature that may occur. Neonatal chicks were exposed for four hours to an outside temperature within an 18-100 degree F range to replicate such conditions. Only two chicks died during the study in one box at 18 degrees F and one at 27 degrees F. These deaths were attributed to suffocation by three-dimensional huddling behavior of the chicks. No additional mortality occurred in the days following any of the trials. By taking body temperatures, sound recordings to determine stress, and utilizing standard shipping boxes, it was concluded that domestic chicken chicks are able to survive shipping in temperatures from 18 degrees F to 100 degrees F.
[Emphasis added].
I. AIR CARRIER POLICY ON TEMPERATURE
The study has been forwarded to the staffs of Senator Charles Grassley (R-IA) and Senator Russ Feingold (D-WI). Utilizing the study the following will be undertaken:
1. Radio Broadcast – Each week Senator Grassley does a radio broadcast that is carried on 22 radio stations in Iowa. This broadcast is always monitored by personnel at the Department of Agriculture. Part of the subject matter for a recent broadcast was on the airline temperature issue for chicks. The main thrust of the message is that the Senator has been disappointed that USDA and the USPS have not forced the airlines to accept the scientific facts regarding temperature parameters for the shipment of birds by imposing the restrictions of the Animal Welfare Act as it relates to dogs and cats. Therefore, he “intends” to remedy that situation.
2. Press Release – A press release was issued from the Senator’s office on the subject.
3. Letters –
A. USDA
A letter from the Senator Grassley (that may be co-signed by Senator Feingold) enclosing the BSA study will be written to Ron DeHaven, now Administrator of the Animal, Plant and Health Service (APHIS) of USDA requesting him to expand on his previous letter (when he was the Deputy Administrator of Veterinary Services of APHIS) on the temperature issue but specifically mentioning temperature as it relates to air shipment of chicks.
B. USPS
When the reply from Dr. DeHaven is received, it will be sent by the Senator(s) to Paul E. Vogel, Vice President, Network Operations Management, USPS, along with the BSA study requesting that the USPS require air carriers to acknowledge the temperature parameters for shipment of chicks in all future contacts between air carriers and the USPS.
4. Legislation –
If the USPS refuses to require such language in its contracts with airlines (that, based on previous experience, may be the case), legislation will be introduced to mandate such adherence.
II. FEDERAL EXPRESS –
As you recall, Federal Express has taken the position that it s exempted under the language of the legislation we obtained regarding the shipment of day-old chicks by air mail. The exception states any air carriers “who commonly and regularly refuses to accept live animals as cargo” are not covered. Federal Express does, in fact, carry live animals as cargo. By contact, however, the USPS allowed Federal Express not to carry live animals by mail utilizing the discretionary language of the statute that “the Postal service may require air carriers to accept day=old poultry …to be transmitted as mail matter.” [Emphasis added].
With Congressional assistance, this matter will continue to be pursued

April 21, 2004 Shipping Update

As has been reported, in mid-2003 Northwest Airlines (NW) decided not to contract with the United States Postal Service (USPS) to carry domestic air mail since its share of the air mail dropped from 12% of the market to 2% under a bid contract system. This absence of service would result in serious problems for bird shippers throughout the mid-west. Representatives of the Bird Shippers of America (BSA) conveyed their concern to officials at USPS, Northwest Airlines as well as Members of the Congress. As a consequence, the USPS entered into negotiations Northwest that resulted in a contract that Northwest would carry “lives” by air mail for a $1.00 per pound surcharge plus postage. This service would, however, only apply to an original point of origin at the Minneapolis-St. Paul Airport.
The service has been instituted and has been successful. However, it was clear that an additional “original point of origin” would be needed to accommodate the demand for such “live” shipment by air mail. To accommodate more mid-west shippers, Detroit, Michigan had been an airport suggested to be an additional point of origin. On April 19, 2004, the USPS has informed the Bird Shippers of America that it has obtained an agreement from Northwest that Detroit, Michigan will now be an original point of origin in addition to Minneapolis -St. Paul.
Two issues that the Bird Shippers of America are continuing to pursue with the USPS and the airline industry are the temperature question and the matter that Federal Express will not carrying day-old chicks as air mail. Federal Express has an air mail contract with the USPS but refuses to agree that it is covered by the statute mandating air carriers that carry air mail must carry day-old chicks and other animals that could be air mailed. The exception under the law is that an air carrier that “regularly and commonly” refuses to carry “any” animals as cargo, are exempt from coverage. We have informed the USPS that Federal Express does, in fact, carry animals as cargo for the pet industry, medical research, zoos and aquariums, and for the agro-business community and individuals.
As to the temperature issue, shippers of day-old poultry have continually experienced the problem that some air carriers refuse to take such shipments when the temperature reaches 85 degrees Fahrenheit (F) on the tarmac. That “benchmark” of that guideline is for the shipment of live animals under the Animal Welfare Act. However, “poultry” is exempt from the Animal Welfare Act and the regulations there under.
It has been pointed out to the USPS and the airline industry that as a practical matter, the time restrictions in the regulations of four hours at 85 degrees F, in practice, would not apply to the shipment of day-old chicks. Shippers deliver the shipments in a manner for timely air transport so there will not be extended delay before a scheduled shipment and arrangements are made for immediate pick-up at the delivery point.
It has been further explained that the more practical and scientific reason is that the 85 degree F is an inappropriate temperature level in that day-old chicks are hatched in 95 to 100 degrees F and should be kept at 95-100 degree F for up to one week of age, gradually reducing it each week.
Stephen S. Boynton

February 23, 2004

Dear BSA Member:
On Friday, January 23rd, Bill MacFarlane of MacFarlane Pheasant Farms (Wisconsin); Janet Crouch, Ideal Poultry (Texas); myself, McMurray Hatcheries (Iowa); and BSA consultant, Stephen S. Boynton; met with Mark Reisinger, Legislative Assistant to Senator Grassley (R-Iowa); Erica Pagel, Legislative Assistant to Senator Finegold (D-WI); Paul E. Vogel, Vice President, Network Operations, United States Postal Service (USPS); John Bonafilia, Manager, Commercial Operation, USPS; and Shelia T. Meyers, Manager, Government Relations USPS; to discuss the surcharge to be imposed by Northwest Airlines for the air mail shipment of poultry and other issues.
First of all, the meeting was very cordial, informative and productive and will be very useful for future contacts with the USPS on issues important to the industry. I believe we all felt that the USPS is interested in solving problems and not just “stone walling” problems. The obvious bipartisan interest of Members of Congress was certainly not lost on the representatives of the USPS – especially actually meeting in Senator Grassley’s office. The results of the meeting were as follows:
1. Surcharge – As you will recall, the reason stated by Northwest Airlines (NW) for its decision not to continue carry domestic mail is that under a new contract system of biding mail contracts, as opposed to the previous procedure of negotiating contracts, NW’s share went from 12% of the market to 2%. Although NW does continue to carry international mail, it made the business decision not to continue to carry domestic mail. Responding to BSA concerns, the USPS entered into discussions with NW to obtain a special concession to carry “lives” by mail; at the Minneapolis-St. Paul hub. After considerable discussions, NW proposed a “non-negotiable” $1.00 surcharge in addition to the postage for such service. Initially, it was suggested by the USPS that the other airlines would be afforded the opportunity to a similar surcharge.
After our discussions, it was determined that no additional surcharge would be permitted to be charged by other air carriers. The $1.00 surcharge would only be charged to customers using Northwest Airline flights originating in Minneapolis-St.Paul. (If you use any other airline you will not be charged the $1.00 surcharge and if you take your birds to Minneapolis/St. Paul AMF, and they fly by Northwest, you will be charged the $1.00/pound.)
Northwest Airline will only handle birds at the Minneapolis/St. Paul AMF facility. If you do not go to Minneapolis/St Paul to ship your birds you must use airlines other than Northwest to carry your birds. If you have questions regarding this, please contact your transportation specialist at the AMF you ship from. THIS GOES INTO EFFECT SATURDAY, FEBRUARY 28TH.
In subsequent discussions with Mr. Reisinger and Ms. Pagel, Congressional efforts will be explored to “equalize” the difference between the surcharge of NW (of $1.00) and the surcharge of other airlines (of $.20) by some sort of tax credit scheme where no additional cost would result to shippers. We will follow through with this effort.
2. Bid Contract-Negotiated Contracts
Unfortunately, because of the considerable savings to the users and the USPS under the bid contact system, the previous negotiated contract procedure will not be used again. Consequently, NW will probably not ever carry domestic mail again.
3. Temperature Issue
One of the continuing problems is that most air carriers impose an 85 degree F cut off where they will not ship “lives” if the temperature reaches that level on the tarmac. This standard is found in the regulations under the Animal Welfare Act (AWA) and has no application to day-old chicks (even though the AWA standard calls for such temperature levels for four hours). BSA has obtained a letter from the U.S. Department of Agriculture that supports the position that such a standard is unnecessary for avian. However, the USPS says it does not have the authority to force the air lines to abide by any particular rule on temperature in the shipments of “lives.” We (legally) disagreed with this position as to their authority.
As a compromise, we are to supply the USPS with documentation over an above what we have already supplied and they have agreed to send it to all air lines as an “unofficial- official” guideline of the USPS in shipping birds.
4. Federal Express
As you recall, Federal Express has taken the legal position that it is not covered by the amendment we obtained that states that all air carriers of mail must take poultry as air mail if it does not regularly and commonly refuse to carry live animals as cargo. Federal Express states that it does not commonly or regularly ship “lives.” In fact, Federal Express does take such shipments for the pet industry, zoos and aquariums, medical research and, we are informed in some cases, birds. The USPS would like Federal Express to take shipments of poultry.
The USPS says that if we can document that fact that such shipments are taken by Federal Express, they will confront Federal Express the position that it is covered by the amendment. This position will be the same issue with UPS in possible forthcoming negotiations with the USPS and USPS will bring up the issue of coverage.
5. Transfer of Shipments
The USPS is required to take shipments of day-old chicks even though there may be a transfer of the shipment along the route to another airplane of the original shipment airline or even if it is transferred to air carrier. [If any postal employee informs a shipper differently, the USPS will call that individual and explain the procedure].
In sum, I believe we all were encouraged by the response of USPS. We have some “homework” to do and will keep you informed. Any suggestions or comments are welcomed.
Sincerely,
Murray McMurray
Chairman

January 5, 2004 – Airline Surcharge

Representatives of the United States Postal Service (USPS) have informed our lobbyist, Steve Boynton, that Northwest Airlines has submitted a proposal to the USPS that it would carry poultry by air mail for a non-negotiable surcharge of $1.00 per pound, plus regular priority mail postage. This charge would take effect in the later part of February. This rate, if accepted, would apply to all airlines carrying live poultry in addition to Northwest Airlines.
Unfortunately, the alternative to this dilemma is to lose another airline (Northwest) from the shrinking number of carriers and to truck your birds either to other airlines or connecting destinations. We are letting you know that this surcharge is a very strong possibility and you should make adjustments now in setting your shipping costs. (In my own case, McMurray Hatchery has gone ahead and figured the additional shipping costs at $1.00 per pound and recalculated our mailing costs for all size boxes going air mail.)
The Bird Shippers of America, through our lobbyist, are in the process of requesting Congressional representatives to organize a meeting with the USPS concerning the surcharge matter as well as other issues. The BSA Board feels that when we discuss the surcharge issues we should make every effort through this meeting to obtain needed concessions on certain other issues of concern to the industry such as temperature restrictions, cargo transfers and other matters which inhibit our ability to ship successfully. If this can be done remains to be seen but we feel an effort must be made to do so.
There is never an easy solution to these problems. It is important to look down the road at these most difficult times and make the choices which best allows our industry to continue to get our products to our customers and keeps us all in business.
Thank you for your patience and cooperation in this most delicate matter. As always, we look forward to input from any of you. Please feel free to contact any of the board members with your questions or concerns.
Sincerely,
Murray McMurray, Chairman

February 24, 2003 – Airline Surcharge

The USPS has finally decided to enforce the surcharge that was put into law a little over one year ago. This is $.20 per pound for parcels being sent by AIR. There have been various reports as to when this will be get going but most reports indicate it will start at any time if it has not already at some locations.
Although all of us would like to hold costs down, the implementation of the surcharge insures the hatcheries and other shippers that the airlines, which carried day-olds, would continue to do so. It was easy to agree to make this concession.
As a group, we all should be treated equally in the matter of applying this surcharge. By this, we should know how we are going to be charged. Is the charge to be by shipping zones, zip codes, or what? How will we know which parcels actually went by plane and which by surface? (The surcharge is to be given to the airlines for their service.) Can the post office verify this? There have been various reports as to how this will be done and there appears to be confusion on the part of the post office concerning the surcharge. We, as shippers, don’t want to be difficult and certainly want to cooperate with the postal officials but it is imperative that the USPS exercises consistency in the manner of charging and collecting these fees.
Certainly, significant steps … but there is further work that needs to be accomplished.
Please ask your local post office, postal representative, or AMF supervisor how all of the above is to be done. If there appears to be a great deal of confusion and inconsistency with the handling of the surcharge please let the BSA know and we will try to work with the USPS to develop an equitable plan.
Thank you for your cooperation and good shipping.
Murray McMurray, Chairman

January 18, 2002 – Update

GOOD NEWS – Shippers can ship birds and customers
will receive them.

Just to bring you up-to-date on "where we are"
as to Phase II of the effort to establish a permanent legislative
solution to the air transport of day-old chicks, adult birds and
other animals, the following activates are underway.

As you are aware, the President signed the "Phase
I" legislation on November 12, 2001 that provided interim
relief to the problem and will be operative until June 30, 2002.
In the meantime, the United States Postal Service (USPS) has informed
us that the negotiations with the airlines for the "reasonable
surcharge" provided in the legislation have proceeded and
the new rates should be in place this month. The industry provided
input to the USPS and, although we have not been informed of the
exact charges, we are told, "the industry should not be disappointed
in the results." Further, negotiations are also being conducted
by the USPS with the airlines for postal contracts that will include
the referenced surcharge for air transport "of shipments
of day-old poultry and such other live animals as postal regulations
all to be transmitted as mail matter." Consequently, as a
practical matter, the contacts for airmail will go beyond the
June 30th date. As we all agree, a permanent legislative solution
is necessary so that the problem will not become one again in
the future.

In that regard, legislation has been drafted and
is currently under review by various entities that seek to ship
live animals by air transport as well as staff in the Congress.
An informal organization has been formed in Washington of representatives
of organizations and industry that are interested in having such
legislation passed in this Session of the Congress. Included in
the coalition are representatives of dog and cat organizations,
the agro-business community, the bio-medical research groups,
sportsmen’s organizations, the pet industry, and other specific
entities interested in shipping live species by air transport
such as fish and bee interests.

In order to counter the false claims on mortality
in the shipment of live animals made by the Humane Society of
the United States (HSUS), the Peoples’ Ethical Treatment of Animals
(PETA) and other animal rights organizations in the previous legislative
battle, a mortality study has been undertaken to compile as much
factual information on this subject as possible to present to
the Members and staff in the Congress.

All post offices should now accept birds for shipment
and have been informed as such by the USPS. Anyone currently having
problems with their local post offices or airlines should contact:
the Distribution Networks Managers for their areas.

  1. New York Metro Area — Metropolitan New York,
    and New Jersey, PR and US Virgin Islands.
    Stuart Gossoff
    646-473-3700

  2. Northeast Area – Maine, NE corridor, (CT, RI,
    MS,NH,VT) New York State
    Jack O’Neill
    860-285-7062

  3. Capital Metro Area – Washington Dc, VA, Baltimore

    Joe Lennon
    301-618-4401

  4. Eastern Area NC, SC, MD,PA some OH and some
    KY
    James Hull
    412-494-2610

  5. Great Lakes Area IL, IN, MI,some of MO
    Al Brown
    630-539-4803

  6. Western Area WA, OR, ID, MT,ND, SD, WI, MN,
    WY, CO, NM,AZ, AK,UT, NV,KS,MO
    Donald Dietz
    303-391-5152

  7. Pacific Area CA, HI and pacific possessions
    Diane Guiuan
    650-615-7141

  8. Southwest Area TX, LA, OK
    Michael Craig
    214-819-8801

  9. Southeast Area GA, FL, AL, MS, KY, TN

    Paul McDermott
    770-390-5910

Again, folks, the grass-roots effort on Phase I was extremely effective
and, we believe, the success in obtaining the Phase I legislation
can be directly traced to that circumstance. In the face of opposition
from the airlines (with the wife of Senator Tom Dachel, the Majority
Leader in the Senate, being a lobbyist for Northwest Airlines that
undoubtedly made for interesting "pillow talk" during
the pending legislative effort), the airline’s trade association,
and the animal rights crowd, your collective grass roots response
"carried the day." To be successful Phase II, your able
assistance once more will certainly be required. With your continued
commitment, we sincerely believe we can, and will be, ultimately
successful.

November 2, 2001 What’s Next

WHAT’S NEXT FOR BIRD SHIPPERS….?
I. BACKGROUND
At year’s end, it is appropriate to review where the bird shipping industry has been, and, most importantly, where we need to go to insure that bird shippers have all the regulatory and legislative assistance to continue their respective businesses without undue burdens from the air transportation industry.
As you will recall, the reason for the formation of the Bird Shippers of America (BSA) was in response to an announced air carrier policy that they would no longer air transport poultry by the U.S. Mail. With the active grass-roots support from the industry, we were successful in legislatively establishing the legal right to ship day-old chicks by airmail. This was accomplished by having legislation introduced in the Congress that eventually became an amendment to the Treasury and General Appropriations Bill in 2001. This was not easy undertaking as the industry faced well-funded opposition from the air carrier industry as well as animal rights groups. Again, with such continued opposition, by an amendment to the Farm Bill in 2002, we have insured that that protection will continue.
It might be added that in the aftermath of the tragedy September 11th, 2001, we had to work with the Federal Aviation Administration to obtain an exemption for bird shipments as all packages in excess of 16 ounces were temporarily banned for cargo on passenger aircraft. We were also successful in this regard.
Certainly, significant steps … but there is further work that needs to be accomplished.
II. TEMPERATURE GUIDELINES
Most air carriers are now refusing to take day-old poultry when the temperature at the airport cargo facility reaches 85 degrees Fahrenheit (F). That (inappropriate) guideline is one that has been established by the regulations under the Animal Welfare Act (AWA) that states, in part: “The ambient temperature…must not rise above 85 deg. F. (29.5 deg. C) for more that 4 consecutive hours when dogs and cats are present.” [Emphasis added]. 7 USC § 2132 (g); 9 CFR § 3.2(a). There are two material problems with that guideline.
Firstly, “poultry” is specifically exempt from the AWA and the regulations there under.
Secondly, and more significantly, the 85 degree F is an inappropriate temperature level in that day-old chicks are hatched in 95 to 100 degrees F and should be kept at that temperature from up to one week of age.
Attempts to “educate” the air carrier industry through the Air Transport Association Cargo Committee have not been successful.
However, we have caused a dialogue between the Department of Agriculture and the U.S. Postal Service urging that a Postal Bulletin be issued regarding appropriate guidelines on the shipment of day-old chicks. So far we have obtained an acknowledgement from the Deputy Administrator for Veterinary Services at the USDA that the temperature guidelines used by air carriers is inappropriate for day-old chicks. Discussions have taken place between officials at USDA and the USPS but nothing has been resolved to date.
This matter is a priority item and needs to be finalized as soon as possible. We may need to seek Congressional assistance in this regard. We shall keep you advised as to developments.
III. FEDERAL EXPRESS
Under contract with the USPS, Federal Express (FedEx) took over the USPS Eagle air mail carrier program. In regard to the legislation that was passed regarding the USPS requiring air carriers who transport mail to “accept as mail shipments of day-old poultry and other live animals as postal regulations will allow to be transmitted as mail matter,” FedEx has maintained that it is not covered by the language of the legislation since it specifically states that the authority of the USPS “shall not apply in the case of any air carrier who commonly and regularly refuses to accept any live animals as cargo. 39 USC § 5402 (d). Federal Express maintains it does “commonly and regularly refuses to accept any live animals as cargo.” Id.
Not so. If you go to the FedEx website you will find the following stated policy:
FedEx does not accept live animal shipments as part of its regularly scheduled service. Live animals will be accepted when the shipment is coordinated and approved by the FedEx Live Animal Desk. Acceptable shipments include, but are not limited to, zoo animals (to and from zoo locations only) and horses (from gateway to gateway locations only). Household pets, such as domestic cats and dogs, are not accepted. For more information, please contact FedEx Live Animal Desk at 800 405-9052. [Emphasis added]. http://www.fedex.com Fed.Ex. Terms and Conditions-Live Animals
In addition to its own stated policy on shipping specific general animal species (i.e., zoo species and horses), we know for a fact, that FedEx has shipped laboratory animals as well as other farm animals by air. Consequently, it is believed that the language of the legislation stating that the USPS can “require any air carrier to accept as mail shipments of day-old poultry and other such animals” would apply to FedEx since, by its own terms, it is not an “air carrier who does not “commonly and regularly refuses to accept any live animals as cargo.” Id. [Emphasis added].
This is an issue that will be pursued legally, administratively as well as legislatively, if necessary.
IV. AIR SHIPMENT OF ALL LIVE ANIMAL
These is presently being developed a nationwide coalition of various associations, organizations, clubs, businesses, and individuals interested in seeking legislation requiring air carriers to accept any live animal as air cargo under reasonable regulations. These formal groups range from species specific such as dogs (sporting and show), cats, birds, the entire pets industry and its specific interests (including fish, birds, reptiles and other mammals), medical research, entertainment (e.g., circuses), and zoos. Proposed legislation has already been drafted where it is intended to seeking its introduction in 108th Congress convening in January 2003.
V. SUMMARY
The industry has come a long way from the day we faced virtual extinction as an industry due to the announced air carrier policy of not taking day-old chicks and other poultry by airmail transport. These accomplishments certainly could not have been achieved without your grass-roots response urging and supporting Members of the Congress in their legislative efforts in the face of strong and well-funded opposition. The industry has a way to go but we are confident with your continued support and assistance we can achieve our goals.
Happy holiday and best wishes for the new year!
Murray McMurray, Chairman

October 18, 2001 – Update

On Wednesday, October 17th, BSA received a call from our lobbyist, Steve Boynton, who indicated our position on House bill H.R. 2590 (Senate S.1397) was in jeopardy. As he sees it, there are four key players on the committee to approve this appropriation: Representatives Istook of Oklahoma and Hoyer of Maryland and Senators Dorgan of North Dakota and Nighthorse Campbell of Colorado. According to Steve’s sources, only Nighthorse Campbell is on our side at this time.
Why is this happening? Why are we not able to convince these legislators we are right? This is very simple, my friends. The animal rights folks have convinced our Washington Representatives and Senators that we, the shippers of poultry, are uncaring sorts who knowingly send birds through the mail expecting a huge death loss. Where does this come from? Again this is quite simple. Mr. Kurt Ebenhock, of Northwest Airlines, has been quoted as saying up to 30% of baby chicks die while in route and that their airline receives many crushed boxes from the postal service. Of course all of us know these statements are not true and when asked, neither Northwest nor the animal rights groups have ever been able to document statistically any of those claims. Is there ever a death loss? Of course there is but in those few cases it can be directly related to human error. Human error can be corrected through management at the hatchery, USPS, or air carrier.
We all know that to stay in business we must be able to ship our poultry to our customer successfully with live arrival guaranteed. Remember, WE ARE THE EXPERTS IN SHIPPING BIRDS THROUGH THE MAIL! Most of us have done this as a profitable business for decades. We know how to safely and successfully ship the birds depending on the environment presented to us at shipping time. Both the airlines and the Post Office do a nice job of helping us but it is we, the shippers, who know how to get our birds to our customers alive and full of vitality. Experience is our teacher and profit is our measure of success. Don’t let anyone tell you differently.
As of today, Thursday, October 18th, because of the anthrax scare in the House, our bill has been put on hold and the committee is not meeting until next week. As sad as that is, it does give us a window of opportunity. If you have any connections to any of the above-mentioned people don’t wait to play your card. Even if you do not have a connection or they are not your congressional representatives, take a minute to call or fax them or their staff and voice your disapproval in their decision to not support our amendment. Call your Senator or Congressmen and have them contact them for you. Tell them why you think they are wrong and what the economic impact this will have on your business and customers. You must act now. Call or Fax them today. Our future may depend on it.
Senator Bryan Dorgan (D-ND), Chairman, Subcommittee on Treasury and General Government of the Senate Appropriations Committee [District Offices: Bismark,701 250-4618; Grand Forks - 701-746-8972; Fargo - 701 239-5389; Minot 701 852-0703].
Senator Ben Nighthorse Campbell (R-CO), ranking member of the Subcommittee [Staff Pat Raymond 202 224-7337 (T)] [District Offices: Greenwood Village - 303 843-4100; Colorado Springs - 719 636-9092; Ft. Collins - 970 206-1788; Pueblo Springs - 719 542-6987; Grand Junction - 970 241- 6631]
Representative Ernest Istook (R-OK), Chairman, Subcommittee on Treasury, Postal Service and General Government of the House Appropriations Committee.[Staff: Michel Merdessa (sp?) 202 225-5834 (T)] District Offices: Oklahoma City 405 942-3636 (T); Bartlesville – 918 336-5546; Ponca City -580 -762-6778]
Representative Steny Hoyer (D-MD) ranking member of the Subcommittee.[Staff: Scott Nance 202-225-5834 (T) 225-5895 (F)] [District Offices: Greenbelt 301 474-0119; Waldorf - 301 843-1577].

October 09, 2001 – Update

Friends,

All of the hatcheries and other folks involved with
shipping live birds have finally gotten a bill, HR 2590, through
the Senate and into committee. To insure that we will be able
to stay in business and ship your poultry to you this coming season,
this bill must be passed through committee just as it is stated
without any changes in the language.

PETA and the Human Society, two very active animal
rights groups, are contacting each committee member asking them
to consider changing the language of this bill. A change in the
language is what the animal rights people want and dismantles
our bill and all we have worked for. Please don’t let them win.

Every office on Capitol Hill can be reached by calling
202-224-3121. Listed below is a list of the committee members.
If any of these listed elected officials represent you or your
district, please take the time to give this number a call and
tell them NOT TO CHANGE THE LANGUAGE IN BILL – H.R. 2590. Even
if you are not represented on this committee please call your
Senator and urge them to tell their peers on the committee to
not change this language.

We are on the last hill. Help us reach the top.

Thank you.
Murray McMurray Hatchery

HOUSE OF REPRESENTATIVES

Republicans   Democrats  
Ernest
Istook 5th District
Frank Wolf 10th District
Anne M. Northup 3rd District
John E. Sununu 1st District
John E. Peterson 5th Distinct
OK
VA
KY
NH
PA
Steny
Hoyer 5th District
Carrie Meek 17th District David E. Price 4th District
Steven Rothman 9th District
Peter J. Visclosky 1st District
MD
FL
NC
NJ
IN

SENATE

Republicans   Democrats  
Ben Nighthorse
Campbell
Richard C. Shelby
Mike DeWine
CO
AL
OH
Bryan
I. Dorgan
Barbara A. Mikulski
Mary Landrieu
ND
MD
LA