UEP-HSUS Agreement Opposed by Multiple Agricultural OrganizationsMon, 12 Dec 2011 17:08:16 CST
Just about every national livestock and poultry producer group- and two major egg producers -along with the National Farmers Union (NFU) and the American Farm Bureau Federation (AFBF), told the House and Senate Agriculture Committees in letters this week they oppose an agreement between the United Egg Producers (UEP) and the Humane Society of the U.S. (HSUS) to amend the Egg Products Act to create a federal standard for egg laying hen housing.
In fact, a total of eight groups signed one letter in agreement that the agreement between the UEP and the HSUS and the proposed legislation are "unwarranted animal rights mandates." These groups were the Egg Farmers of America, National Cattlemen's Beef Association, National Pork Producers Council, American Farm Bureau Federation, American Sheep Industry Association, National Farmers Union, National Turkey Federation, and the National Milk Producers Federation.
Click on the LINK below to view a copy of the letter sent by these organizations to the House and Senate Ag Committees.
The ag groups said the so-called "enriched cage system" called for by the UEP-HSUS legislation will increase cost of production, egg costs to consumers and do little if anything to improve bird welfare. "Our organizations continue to make considerable animal care investments with an eye toward continued animal welfare improvements; (however) this proposal would stifle the industry for years to come. We ask simply Congress reject any attempt to legislate unwarranted animal rights mandates," the groups said.
UEP said the letter, "-is a direct challenge upon egg farmers who are not asking for federal appropriations and simply want to improve the welfare of egg laying hens and end the prospects of ballot initiatives." Said UEP, "They (the ag groups) are motivated by a hypothetical and theoretical fear that our legislation that involves eggs only would set a precedent they do not like." UEP called on its members to make "their feelings known" to Congress.
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