Animal Farm - California's Prop 12 🐖
Give them more space
Next week, Californians will vote on Proposition 12, otherwise known as the Farm Animal Confinement Initiative. This proposition supports animal welfare by setting minimum space requirements for all chickens, pigs, and calves.
In 2008, California voters passed a similar bill called the Standards for Confining Farm Animals (Proposition 2). However, since it did not have minimal confinement requirements, commercial egg producers successfully argued that larger cages for chicken housing were perfectly compliant with the law. Proposition 12 is designed to counter these deficiencies and require cage free hens by 2020.
San Francisco Chronicle: Vote yes on Prop. 12 to require cage-free housing for hens
Those supporting Proposition 12 frame the vote as an opportunity to provide animals with less cruel living conditions. They appeal to the emotions by describing how hens could “barely move an inch” inside their “barbaric” and “small” cages. These articles state that many studies conclude that these caged hens are more like to harbour bacteria than cage free hens.
Those against Proposition 12 highlight studies that show Proposition 2 has already caused California egg production to decrease by 35% and caused retail California egg prices to increase by 33%. They believe Proposition 12 would require egg producers to spend even more after they spent more than $200 million to upgrade their facilities to comply with the earlier proposition.
Will this affect me?
If Prop 12 passes next Tuesday, it will affect everyone’s wallet. The egg and pork industries nationwide would likely adopt the restrictions set by California so their products can be sold nationwide. A UC Davis economist predicts the amount an average person spends on eggs will increase ~$50 per year.
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