Utah Becomes 8th State to Ban Cages in the Egg Industry
THE LAW: The new law is a step in the right direction for animals, and it not only mandates cage-free conditions for hens, but also requires the hens’ enclosures to include perches, nest boxes and scratching and dust-bathing areas, so they’ll be able to engage in some of the behaviors that are important to them.
WHEN DOES THE LAW GO INTO EFFECT?: The law will be fully phased in by 2025, and will impact approximately five million chickens every year.
WHERE ELSE ARE CAGES FOR HENS BANNED?: Utah joins a growing list of U.S. states that ban the caging of hens used for egg production, including Michigan, Oregon, Washington, Massachusetts, California, Rhode Island and Colorado.
MORE WORK TO BE DONE: While Utah’s announcement is great progress, there is much more that needs to be done to help animals. Eliminating cages does away with some of the cruelest conditions, but even hens raised in cage-free situations are often kept in dimly-lit, crowded sheds—and all hens raised in the egg industry are slaughtered once their egg production declines. Male chicks born into the egg industry are killed shortly after hatching because they’re considered useless to both the egg and meat industries. This is known as “chick culling.”
HOW YOU CAN HELP HENS: The best way to help hens is by contacting your lawmakers, voting on cage-free legislature when it comes up in your area, and by simply not eating eggs or other animal derived products. With all of the delicious eggless products and egg-free recipes out there, going plant-based is easier than ever!