December 30, 2014

Egg prices likely to rise amid laws mandating cage-free henhouses

If your eggs seem a little pricier, consider the recent changes on Frank Hilliker’s ranch. In the last six months, the third-generation egg farmer in central San Diego County has reduced his flock by half and embarked on a $1-million overhaul of his henhouses to make them more spacious. Customers are now paying about 50% more for a dozen eggs from Hilliker’s family business at around $3 a carton.

It’s all to comply with a landmark animal welfare law that takes effect in California on New Year’s Day. Voters overwhelmingly approved Proposition 2 in 2008 to effectively abolish the close confinement of farm animals in cramped cages and crates – a practice that animal advocates say causes needless suffering and boosts the likelihood of salmonella contamination.  Read More

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