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Posted by Samina Cabral
Samina Cabral
Samina Cabral is a native Southern Californian who now resides on the shores of
User is currently offline
on Tuesday, 24 January 2012
in Mother Nature's Big and Small

The Rotten Egg Bill

Hen-1In November of 2008 Californians voted on Proposition 2 and it passed with 63% of voters supporting the measure which “prohibits the confinement of farm animals in a manner that does not allow them to turn around freely, lie down, stand up, and fully extend their limbs.” To put it comically the animals need to be able to play “Hokey-Pokey” - “You put your left wing in, you take your left wing out, you put your left wing in and you shake it all about! You do the hokey pokey and you turn yourself around...”

The California statute applies to egg-laying hens, calves raised for veal, and pregnant pigs. Failure to comply with the law would result in fines and/or jail time. It does not eliminate cages completely for hens- just tiny battery cages, or make free-range mandatory.  The law will not go into full effect until January of 2015

The piece of the law that applies to hens could be nullified if the Egg Products Inspection Act Amendments of 2012 (H.R. 3798) passes or as opponents are calling it the “Rotten Egg Bill.” According to a press release, in addition to eliminating any battery cage laws already on the books, the bill will also “ Deprive voters of the right and ability to pass ballot measures banning cages.” and “Deny state legislatures the ability to enact laws to outlaw battery cages or otherwise regulate egg factory conditions.”

One of the main opponents to the bill is The Humane Farming Association (HFA) and they started a website called: StopTheRottenEggBill.org. The HFA’s National Director Bradley Miller said, "We are urging citizens to contact their U.S. Representatives to oppose this bill. It represents not only a major loss for laying hens, but also for states' rights and voters' rights throughout the nation. If it passes, it will establish egg factory cages as a national standard that could never be challenged or changed by state law or public vote, and would keep laying hens forever locked in cages." Concerned citizens can also sign a petition on the website.

So why is it important for laying hens to have humane and clean conditions to produce eggs? The Humane Society of the United States wrote a blog in December of 2009 that linked confined hens andFresh_eggs increased amount of Salmonella in eggs. The reports said, “Cramming 100,000 birds or more under a single roof in tiny battery cages creates an immense volume of contaminated airborne fecal dust that can rapidly spread Salmonella infection between the birds.” They also noted a study a published in the American Journal of Epidemiology in 2002 which “found that people who ate eggs from caged hens had about twice the odds of coming down with Salmonella food poisoning compared to those who did not eat cage eggs.”

Eliminating the risk of food poisoning is probably the best (for humans) reason to ask or enact laws for farmers to change their methods. The HFA’s bottom line when it comes to the best reasons for the hens is: “Cruelty is cruelty.

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Samina Cabral is a native Southern Californian who now resides on the shores of Lake Erie in Northeast Ohio. Samina and her husband believe that sustainability starts in the home and try to live their lives as simply as possible without compromising comfort.

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1944: Camano Class Light Cargo Ship was laid down for the US Army as FS-289 at Wheeler Shipbuilding in Whitestone, NY.

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1945: Delivered to US Army.

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1950: Acquired by the US Navy on July 1, 1950 and placed in service as USNS New Bedford (T-AKL-17).

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1954: The movie, Mister Roberts, was made on the USNS New Bedford (T-AKL-17).

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1955 - 1963: Used as a cargo supply ship for the Texas Towers, a network of advanced radar stations located off the Eastern Seaboard. In 1957, Capt. Sixto Mangual was commander of the AKL-17 and in 1961 it was rechristened the USNS New Bedford. The New Bedford, sailing out of State Pier, was keeping vigil when Texas Tower No. 4 callapsed off the New Jersey coast during a January 1961 nor'easter.

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1963: Reclassified as Miscellaneous Unclassified (IX-308).

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1971: The New Bedford (IX-308) served as a Torpedo Test Firing Vessel in the Puget Sound area.

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1994: Ceremony in New Bedford.

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1995: The ship was struck from the Naval Register on April 4.

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2004: The Sea Bird's current disposition is a tuna long liner (fishing boat) out of San Diego, CA.

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2006: Design of the Tesla Turbine began on June 11, 2006. The Sea Bird was sold by Defense Reutilization and Marketing Service for commercial service.

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2007: The Sea Bird was drydocked for renovations.

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2008: The Sea Bird setting sail to Sea-Tac in Seattle, WA.

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2009 - 2010: The Sea Bird is currently docked at Seattle Sea-Tac.

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