United Egg Producers (UEP) President and CEO, Gene Gregory, advocates an amendment to
the current Farm Bill. The amendment, Egg Products Inspection Act Amendments of 2012 (H.R. 3798), reasons that eggs are a commodity and hopes to accommodate producers who move eggs across state lines for big companies such as Wal-Mart by giving national uniformity to shipping rules such as cage size. There is concern though that regional producers may face higher costs as a result.

Gregory believes that federal intervention is warranted even though it would be the first time that “Congress would set specific size standards for a livestock enterprise.” Gregory believes that state by state legislation to resolve the issue is illogical because the industry does not have “that kind of money to fight all of those lawsuits.”
UEP has negotiated the finer details of the amendment with the Humane Society of the United States (HSUS). The UEP initially wanted a cage size of 90 square inches and HSUS wanted cage free, but they have compromised at 124 square inches. The housing systems will also be enriched” with “scratch pads, perching, and other amenities.” Gregory believes that Congress will be receptive to this figure given that it was negotiated with HSUS. HSUS president, Wayne Pacelle, also defends the amendment as a “positive change.”
For the full article, click here. For an article responding to the view of regional producers, click here. For more information about animal welfare laws, click here.