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June 23, 2010

The Humane Society of the United States Urges Schwarzenegger To Sign Egg Bill into Law

The Humane Society of the United States urged Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger to sign a bill to require that shelled (whole) eggs sold in California comply with modest animal welfare and food safety standards. Voters passed Proposition 2 in November 2008 to phase out production of eggs from hens crammed into tiny cages, and this legislation would apply the standards in that ballot measure to the sale of eggs in the state. It would take effect at the same time as Proposition 2 – in January 2015.

The Assembly and Senate cleared A.B. 1437 by wide margins, and it now awaits action by Gov. Schwarzenegger. It requires that all whole eggs sold in California as of Jan. 1, 2015, come from hens able to stand up, lie down, turn around and spread their wings without touching each other or the sides of their enclosure. The measure passed the Assembly by a vote of 65 to 9 and the Senate by a vote of 23 to 7.

"Californians don't want farm animals mistreated on factory farms and they don't want unsafe foods on their plates," said Wayne Pacelle, president and CEO of The HSUS. "Here's a bill that protects animals and consumers, and we urge Governor Schwarzenegger to sign it."

The HSUS praised Assemblymember Jared Huffman, D-San Rafael, the author of the legislation, for shepherding A.B. 1437 to passage in the Assembly, and Senate Majority Leader Dean Florez, D-Shafter, who managed the bill in the Senate. Co-authors of the legislation include Sen. Loni Hancock, D-Oakland, and Assemblymembers Tom Berryhill, R-Modesto, Cathleen Galgiani, D-Tracy, Ted Lieu, D-Torrance, Pedro Nava, D-Santa Barbara, and Jose Solorio, D-Santa Ana. As a state senator, Lt. Gov. Abel Maldonado was also a cosponsor of the legislation.

Other supporters of the legislation include the ASPCA, Sierra Club California, Planning and Conservation League, Center for Food Safety, Center for Science in the Public Interest, Bon Appétit Management Company and dozens of other organizations. California's egg industry does not oppose this legislation.

AB 1437 follows on the heels of the landslide passage of Prop 2, the Prevention of Farm Animal Cruelty Act. Nearly 64 percent of California voters passed Prop 2, which got more votes than any citizen initiative in California history.

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Follow The HSUS on Twitter. See our work for animals on your iPhone by searching "HumaneTV" in the App Store.

The Humane Society of the United States is the nation's largest animal protection organization—backed by 11 million Americans, or one of every 28. For more than a half-century, The HSUS has been fighting for the protection of all animals through advocacy, education, and hands-on programs. Celebrating animals and confronting cruelty—on the web at humanesociety.org.

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