Wednesday, January 27, 2010

HSUS Stock Portfolio

The H$U$ Stock Portfolio

Spidey thought he'd do a little checking into more HSUS stock holdings and has been tied up in that web for a while. You may ask, "Why does HSUS buy publicly traded stock in the food business?" Simple - to put them out of business. Their tactics involve thinly veiled animal rights rhetoric.  When "animal welfare" is used to control people, then you can be sure, we are dealing with something more than meets the eye.  Their focus on farm animals - especially caged hens and crated pigs - is designed to harass the following companies:

Bob Evans Farms, Inc.  Includes Jack in the Box and Steak and Shake

Brinker International   Located in Dallas, Texas and is the parent company of Chili's, On the Border Mexican Grill and Cantina, Maggiano's Little Italy, and Romano's Macaroni Grill. It is the largest casual-dining restaurant operator in terms of revenue, and second largest in terms

Burger King Holdings Inc. Miami Florida

Career Education Corp.  includes Le Cordon Bleu cooking school

Carnival Corporation (Carnival Cruise Lines)

Cal-Maine Foods, Inc

Campbells Soup
Note: Dorrance "Do Do" Hamilton is the Campbells Soup heir and her daughter-in-law, Anne Hamilton, is affiliated with Main Line Rescue.
The Cheesecake Factory

ConAgra Foods Inc.

Costco Wholesale Corp  (Costco Brand)

Cracker Barrel Old Country Store

Denny’s Corp.

DineEquity Inc.

Domino’s Pizza Inc.

Einstein Noah Restaurant Group
General Mills, Inc.

Hain Celestial Group  (Plainville Turkey Farm)


Kraft Foods, Inc.

Krispy Kreme

Kroger Co. Kroger Company acquired Dillon Companies grocery chain in Kansas along with its subsidiaries, King Soopers, City Market, Fry's, Baker's, Gerbes, and the convenience store chain Kwik Shop. David Dillon, in the 4th generation under J.S. Dillon, the founder of Dillon Companies, is now the CEO of Kroger. See More holdings

McDonald’s Corp.

P.F. Chang’s China Bistro, Inc. parent company of Pei Wei Asian Diner

Royal Caribbean Cruises, Ltd.
Ruddick Corp (Harris Teeter Supermarket Chain)

Safeway Inc. .

Sara Lee

Smithfield Foods Inc. World's Largest Pork Producer

Tasty Baking Company

Tim Horton's, Inc.

Tyson's Foods Inc.

Wal-Mart Stores Inc.

Wendy’s/Arby’s Group Inc.


Sonic Corp.  This week's rotten egg award goes to Nancy Robertson, senior vice president of communications for Sonic, who stated that the chain has been working mostly with PETA during the past 18 to 24 months to develop its animal welfare guidelines.  What!!!??? Sonic needs to tell them where to stick their guidelines!

Richard Lobb, spokesman for the National Chicken Council, was quoted as saying: “The statements they (HSUS and PeTA) make are really false and misleading.” That is  very generous and the understatement of the century.  The Chicken Council has an excellent set of guidelines regarding animal treatment." Nancy and her ilk need to be educated and read good, reliable information.   The United Egg Producers implemented chicken-treatment protocols in 1998, after years of research on whether different procedures affected stress levels in the birds. That group says about 80 percent of eggs in the United States come from producers who follow those guidelines.

HSUS Certification?

HSUS is actively buying stock in major restaurant chains across the country to force them into buying food produced exclusively by HSUS approved production practices. This will drive up the cost of meat, eggs and other foods, and and drive down demand for those U.S. produced foods.  Many business will resort to buying substandard food products from foreign countries.

After all, we have witnessed the environmentalist's movement to endorse eco-certification of products.  And PeTA created their cruelty free endorsement.  It is no wonder HSUS wants a piece of this action. Notice how these "ethical certifications" have crept into the politically correct, collective mindset of the Kool-Aid drinking sheeple.

Let's take a closer look at Cal-Maine Foods, Inc., a Delaware corporation with its principal executive offices in Jackson, Mississippi.  Cal-Maine Foods, Inc. is primarily engaged in the production, grading, packaging, marketing and distribution of fresh shell eggs. They hatch chicks, grow and maintain flocks of pullets (young female chickens, usually under 20 weeks of age), layers (mature female chickens) and breeders (male or female birds used to produce fertile eggs to be hatched for egg production flocks) at their facilities. They also manufacture feed, and produce, process and distribute shell eggs. They are the largest producer and marketer of shell eggs in the United States and market the majority of their shell eggs in 29 states - primarily in the southwestern, southeastern, mid-western, and mid-Atlantic regions of the United States. Since 1989, Cal Maine bought sixteen egg farms throughout the United States including Hillandale Farms, Inc. and Tampa Farms, LLC, both in Florida; and Country Creek Farms in Arkansas, to name a few.

Cal-Maine’s customer base is made up of 85% retail customers, which includes supermarkets, supercenters, and box stores; 10 percent food services distributors; and 5 percent egg products. The company also markets cage free and organic eggs or what they refer to as "specialty eggs." Brands include Egg-Land's Best, Farmhouse and 4-Grain. They produce and distribute private label specialty eggs to several customers. Cal Maine markets their products via an extensive distribution network to a diverse group of customers, including national and regional grocery store chains, club stores, foodservice distributors, and egg product manufacturers.

In July 10, 2009, Cal-Maine reported a fire at their Farwell, Texas facility. This is a 700 acre facility which includes a processing plant, feed mill, two pullet houses, and nine layer houses. The fire completely destroyed four of the nine layer houses, with additional loss of laying hens at a fifth house due to smoke inhalation. An investigation ruled that the fire was accidental, but it sure reminded me of one of ALF's infamous cookouts.

Check out the "Dear Fellow Cal-Maine Foods Shareholder" letter  if you have the stomach for it.  In the letter, HSUS urged Cal-Maine to vote for a shareholder proposal that would require them to disclose all of their political contributions, including payments to trade associations and other tax-exempt associations, and donations made in support of or in opposition to ballot measures. WOW! Talk about HYPOCRISY! Apparently what is good for HSUS is not good for legitimate corporations which employ people and pay taxes. They have made the same "suggestions" to other companies, including McDonalds.

Campaigns, Letters and Lawsuits
Like the oft-used "Dear Cal-Maine" letter above, this is the information they use to encourage companies to end the use of sow gestation crates.

HSUS sent this letter to Pilgrim's Pride, one of their targets for many years.  This company is now bankrupt.  It is beyond the scope of this article to analyze the impact such campaigns have had on our economy, workforce and the lives of employees of such companies.

HSUS filed an egg price-fixing lawsuit against the United Egg Producers; United Egg Allied; Cal-Maine Foods, Inc.; Daybreak Foods, Inc.; Golden Oval Eggs, LLC; Michael Foods, Inc.; Midwest Poultry Services, L.P.; MoArk LLC; National Food Corp.; Norco Ranch, Inc.; NuCal Foods, Inc.; Pilgrim’s Pride Corp.; Rose Acre Farms, Inc.; and R.W. Sauder, Inc.  They also targeted Sanderson Farms, Inc. along with PeTA since KFC was one of their largest customers.

HSUS has been criticized for their questionable fundraising activities during the Hurricane Katrina crisis.  While legitimate rescuers were working night and day to save animals and eventually reunite them with their owners, whenever possible, HSUS never missed a beat in criticizing businesses like Sanderson Farms.  Though the farm lost thousands of chickens and $7.9 million dollars during Katrina, the HSUS took full advantage of the crisis to spout their propaganda against caged hens.  To this day, HSUS continues to rant at companies regarding their preference for cage free hens.  See HSUS 2009 letter to Denny's.

Last fall, HSUS filed complaints with the SEC and FTC against the International House of Pancakes, alleging that the restaurant chain lies about the living conditions of the chickens that lay the eggs for its omelets and pancakes. IHOP claims that its eggs are "cruelty free" and animals used for its food receive "dignified, humane treatment." The animal welfare group said that's not true and filed complaints with federal regulators saying the Glendale-based company is engaged in "false or deceptive advertising." The complaints allege that the eggs for IHOP's 1,421 U.S. restaurants come from chickens raised in cramped cages that do not allow them to stretch their wings, walk around or nest.

Food outlets such as Burger King Corp., Costco Wholesale Corp., Denny's Corp. and Wendy's/Arby's Group Inc. have given in to pressure from HSUS in the past and now buy at least some of their eggs from producers that allow their hens to roam.

All this research, writing and talk of food has made me hungry for an all American breakfast of sausage, bacon and eggs with a tall, cold glass of milk. yummmm   I'll be back after my break.


Spidey feels better now and will share some more findings with you.  I ran across some old cached information in a dusty corner of the web about various Socially Responsible Investment (SRI) Mutual Funds. The Humane Society Humane Equity Fund, launched by Salomon Brothers Asset Management with HSUS as a consultant, was dissolved after 30 months in 2002.  But they are still active and persist in trying to drive public policy nonetheless. 

HSUS, as a stockholder, also mounted a campaign against Allergan, Inc. to eliminate the LD50 test from their manufacturing process of Botox and Botox Cosmetics. 

Other Business Ventures
HSUS holds stock in Strayer Education Inc., based in Arlington, VA. In fact Thomas Waite III is one of their board members. He is also the Treasurer and CFO of HSUS. One report provides an eestimated annual revenue of $220,507,000 for Strayer. Information found on the web state that it is "a post secondary institution of higher education" that has "40 campuses (another report said 65) scattered throughout Florida, Delaware, Georgia, Tennessee, Pennsylvania, North Carolina and Washington D.C." They "provide associates and bachelor's degrees in a variety of fields including accounting, computer information systems, computer programming and business administration."

Bluefly, Inc., a Delaware corporation based in New York City, received a Civil Investigative Demand (a "Discovery Request") from the Federal Trade Commission that "requested the production of certain documents and other information regarding the labeling and advertising of apparel containing products that contain fur or faux fur components." It should be no surprise that this Discovery Request was issued in connection with a petition filed by the Humane Society of the United States with the FTC regarding the labeling and advertising of fur products bya number of national retailers and apparel manufacturers. The company bowed to pressure and complied.

Jakks Pacific, Inc. in Malibu, California signed a 2007 licensing agreement with HSUS to develop, distribute and market a diverse line of HSUS-branded pet products (JAKKS Pets), with a portion of the sales going directly to benefit HSUS and its programs. Products include a line of pet toys, collars, leashes, grooming products, bedding, carriers, feeders, apparel and more for dogs and cats. Hey all you rescues and shelters out there -- call them at (310) 456-7799 and ask for donations of these products.

Convio located at11400 Burnet Rd. Building 5, Suite 200 in Austin, TX 78758 and owned by Gene Austin is employed by HSUS to conduct its online fundraising and manage its constituent database. In fact, last fall HSUS has a position open to manage their Convio database located in Gaithersburg, MD. The salary range for that position was advertised in the low to mid 50K's. The new kid on the block is working overtime!  (Check out HSUS website information on Alexa.)

Medical Media Television, Inc. is based in Tampa Florida. Their PetCARE TV includes segments on Feline Resorption Lesions, Pain Management, Rabies, Dental Exams, Sudden Weight Loss, Brushing Cat's Teeth, Ear Mites, Chewing, K9 Arthritis, Pet IDs, Diet & Dental Health, FIV, Flea Control, Physical Exams, Moist Dermatitis, Glaucoma, Pet First Aid, Aging Pets, Litter Training, Vaccinations, Ticks, Pet Insurance, Scratching-Cat, Obesity, Traveling with Pet, Internal Parasites, Ocular Exams, and Parvovirus. Their programming routinely includes "Pet Minutes", which is produced and provided, by HSUS.

Each DVD magazine contains approximately 28 educational segments interspersed with up to 24 commercial advertising spots (consisting of 30-second commercials), approximately 24 billboards (consisting of 7-second static visual, a picture that doesn't move, identifying a product brand or company), and public service announcements. Their educational programming is designed for the veterinary industry and is aired in veterinary hospitals and targeted to pet owners nationwide.

Well, well, well.  This is a pretty good list of the HSUS portfolio holdings- some past and some present.  We have learned quite a bit about how they operate and some of the tools they use.  I have tried to keep this post fairly short, but HSUS is a many headed medusa and trying to pin them down is a very time consuming process!


In addition to the above, HSUS has garnered corporate support from the following businesses.  Each of these merchants should be educated about the HSUS.  Their sponsorship would greatly benefit true animal welfare causes and organizations.

The list begins with the Bank of America, which received Government Bailout  Funds.  They offer HSUS credit cards and checking programs.

AuthentEscapes Travel Agency

BB&T  (NC) Fund for Animals credit card .  They also offer a Farm Sanctuary credit card as well as PeTA animal checks.

Buffalo Exchange Apparel retailer.  They participate in the  Coats for Cubs program which asks that old fur coats be donated for orphaned and injured wildlife.

Carivint√Ęs Winery (Dog Lover's Wine club et al) Several wine clubs featuring animal label art

Charity Partner Event ticket sales

Cheeky Monkey Jewelry Jewelry from reclaimed metals and conflict-free stones

Crocodiles Not Waterlilies Plush/books for children
Roger Anthony - is Founder and Chief Crocodile Officer of Crocodiles Not Waterlilies. He is the author of Now I Understand: Pearls of Wisdom for One’s Pathway of Mastery and co-author of the recently published The Tall Poppy Ship.  In 2000, Roger opened the US arm of Crocodiles not Waterlilies. After 15 years in the corporate training sector, the company has expanded into educating children with the focus of “education through entertainment”. Consequently, it is producing a series of high adventure cartoon video clips, story books, games, movies and related products, aimed at enriching values and teaching children how to make wise choices in a world of abundant opportunities.

Amongst Roger’s Australian clients are the National Australian Bank, Dept of Employment, Education, Training and Youth Affairs, Bristol Myers-Squibb Pharmaceuticals and IIR Conferences. US Clients include Utah Judicial Institute, Utah League of Cities and Towns, Intermountain Health Care, Family Financial Education Foundation, Heritage Schools, Powerquest and Salt Lake Community College

Check Gallery Personal checks and address labels San Nicolas Feral Cat program sponsor

Ebay Giving Works run by Mission Fish Charity auctions on eBay Giving Works

eFundraising, a subsidiary of QSP Time, Inc. Magazine subscriptions

GreaterGood AnimalRescueSite click-to-feed program

Grounds for Change Organic, shade-grown, fair-trade, and carbon-free coffee

Harland Clarke Personal checks  San Antonio TX

HomeAgain microchip by Schering-Plough Animal Care Expo sponsor

Jakks Pacific Pet products including apparel and toys

Land Rover North America Wild Horse Protection Project sponsor

Legacy Interactive Pet Pals video game

Microsoft i'm Initiative with Windows Live Messenger and Windows Live Hotmail

Mighty Fine Apparel

Neue Galerie New York Art/music gallery

NSF Menswear designer of bracelet and matching dog collar

Oreck Supporter discounts on vacuum cleaners

Organic Bouquet Eco-friendly flowers and gifts

Petco Stores and Foundation End Dog Fighting program and Animal Care Expo sponsor

Pet e-Tailing Humane Domain, the online store of The HSUS

Petfinder Animal Care Expo Sponsor

Petplan Pet insurance and Spay Day Pet Photo Contest sponsor

PetSmart Charities Disaster conference and Animal Care Expo Sponsor

Pilot Travel Centers Emergency Services and HSVMA Field Services sponsor

Prai Beauty Group Genesis Awards sponsor

** UPDATE* * Precious Cat  Cat litter additive to support Shelter Partners Program
Precious Cat, Inc. has withdrawn it's sponsorship of the Humane Society of the United States Shelter Partner Program. However, Precious Cat will still continue to support shelters by providing them with free Shelter Kits. The Shelter Kits contain Cat AttractT Litter Additive, free coupons for our cat litter products and Litter Box Solutions Booklets.

Somerset Entertainment Music Nature Sounds CDs
Tisbest Charity gift cards

ViMax Publishing Provides HSUS pet information to select grocers

Xerox Color printers to support Shelter Partners Program

Yellow Tail Wine "Tails for Tails" program

Zazzle.com Print on demand postage stamps and products