The American Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals (ASPCA) is taking a stand–along with animal welfare, family farming, food safety and environmental groups–to end the extreme confinement of egg-laying hens in Washington by supporting the Prevention of Farm Animal Cruelty Act.
According to the ASPCA, “nearly six million egg-laying hens in the state of Washington are forced to spend their entire lives crammed in small wire cages with less space than a sheet of paper to live. If passed, the Prevention of Farm Animal Cruelty Act would require that egg-laying hens have enough room to turn around and extend their wings. The measure would also make the sale of eggs from battery cage facilities illegal.”
The Act aims to “promote the well-being of farm animals by requiring Federal agencies to procure food products derived from certain animals only from sources that raised the animals free from cruelty and abuse, and for other purposes.” It would take effect in 2018, giving egg producers more than six years to make the transition to more humane housing conditions for egg-laying hens.
For us non-Washingtonians, this is a step in the right direction! If you remember last summer’s egg recalls from factory-farmed egg-laying hens, you might appreciate this comment by the ASPCA’s Senior Vice President of Anti-Cruelty, Matt Bershadker: “Intensive confinement of factory farm animals is not only inhumane, but also harmful to public health and the environment. We hope that efforts such as the one in Washington will continue to spread across the country, and that the cruel practices of factory farms will be a thing of the past.”
Unhappy hens mean unhappy eggs for us. Please spread the word!