Egg Industry - September 2019 - 3

EggIndustry ❙ 3

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tokeefe@wattglobal.com

Who decides the
future of US retail
cage-free eggs?
Haven't the activists already won the battle over how U.S. hens will be
housed? After all, just about every major retail and foodservice outlet and major
food processors have pledged to only purchase cage-free eggs and egg products by
some future date. But most U.S. consumers are still purchasing more economical
cage-produced eggs at retail.
US states that have adopted
Prior to the campaign to concage-free egg legislation
vince major egg buyers to make
future cage-free egg purchase
pledges, activists were able to
get legislation passed in several
Washington
7.5
2.3%
1/1/2024
states that addressed hen housing
in a less-than-uniform manner.
1/1/2024
Oregon
4.3
1.3%
Washington and Oregon enacted
1/1/2022
California
39.8
12.1%
standards that didn't mandate
1/1/2026
Rhode Island
1.1
0.3%
cage-free but weren't typical
Total
52.7
16.0%
industry cage housing; they now
have both passed legislation
*x million
Source: U.S. Census Bureau
mandating that only cage-free
eggs be sold in these states by the end of 2023.
Michigan's legislature passed a bill mandating cage-free housing in December
2018, but it was vetoed by the governor in January. This legislation was to replace
a law that mandates hens be given 144 square inches per bird in any type of enclosure by April 1, 2020. Expect the industry and activists to make another push
for cage-free legislation in Michigan. Massachusetts has a law that mandates 1.5
square feet per hen, but not the type of enclosure required.
The four states that have laws mandating cage-free housing for hens have
estimated 2019 populations of 55.3 million people, or 16% of the U.S. total.
Adding in the populations of Michigan and Massachusetts would mean 21.1% of
the total U.S. population would live in cage-free states.
U.S. consumers are voting with their wallets for less expensive eggs from cagehoused hens. Activists will continue to push for legislation mandating cage-free egg
sales, because they know the type of eggs consumers will buy if given the choice. ■

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Egg Industry - September 2019

Table of Contents for the Digital Edition of Egg Industry - September 2019

Egg Industry - September 2019
Pest control 10 years after FDA’s Egg Safety Rule
Iowa Cage Free delivering on hen welfare promise
Egg Industry - September 2019 - CT1
Egg Industry - September 2019 - CT2
Egg Industry - September 2019 - Egg Industry - September 2019
Egg Industry - September 2019 - Cover2
Egg Industry - September 2019 - 3
Egg Industry - September 2019 - 4
Egg Industry - September 2019 - 5
Egg Industry - September 2019 - Pest control 10 years after FDA’s Egg Safety Rule
Egg Industry - September 2019 - 7
Egg Industry - September 2019 - 8
Egg Industry - September 2019 - 9
Egg Industry - September 2019 - 10
Egg Industry - September 2019 - 11
Egg Industry - September 2019 - 12
Egg Industry - September 2019 - 13
Egg Industry - September 2019 - Iowa Cage Free delivering on hen welfare promise
Egg Industry - September 2019 - 15
Egg Industry - September 2019 - 16
Egg Industry - September 2019 - 17
Egg Industry - September 2019 - 18
Egg Industry - September 2019 - 19
Egg Industry - September 2019 - 20
Egg Industry - September 2019 - 21
Egg Industry - September 2019 - 22
Egg Industry - September 2019 - Cover3
Egg Industry - September 2019 - Cover4
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