News update:Oct 4, 2006

US Council member wants cage eggs labelled

A Washington DC Council member has proposed a local law requiring stores that sell eggs to show whether they were produced by hens kept in cages.

Councillor Jim Graham was cited as saying to the Washington Post that he doesn't know where his eggs come from when he shops at his local supermarket, but that he would like to know.
Under the proposed law, egg sellers would be required to hang prominent signs saying "eggs may be from caged hens."
If passed, the law would be the first of its kind in the US, according to the Humane Society of the United States and United Egg Producers.
Erik Lieberman, director of government affairs for the National Grocers Association, was quoted as saying, "We see it as a government-mandated marketing programme. We don't need a city mandating that signs go up in every grocery store."
Paul Shapiro of the Humane Society was cited as saying it could set a precedent, adding, "The bill is important in that it protects consumers who are concerned about animal cruelty."
Mitch Head, a spokesman for United Egg Producers, which represents about 85 percent of US egg producers, was cited as saying that about 95 percent of eggs sold are produced by caged hens, and that a decade ago, the number was closer to 100 percent.
The law would be another step in a recent trend towards advocacy for cage-free eggs, including the ban or reduction of cage eggs in the national supermarket chains Whole Foods Market and Wild Oats Natural Marketplace, as well as at the American University, George Washington University, Gallaudet University and Georgetown University.

Editor WorldPoultry

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