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Soon all Eggs Sold in CA Must Come from Humanely Treated Hens

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Passed by voters in 2008, Proposition 2 ensures that our state's poultry "be able to freely lie down, stand up, extend their wings and turn around by 2015," explains SF Gate. "The law essentially bans the use of small cages that cram the animals so tightly they sometimes cannot turn around."

But now the law is expanding, and will affect egg-laying hens outside of California, too. Yesterday, Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger signed a bill that stipulates "farms outside California will have to abide by the Golden State's humane treatment law if they want to sell eggs here."

The bill applies only to whole, fresh eggs, and not processed foods that contain eggs. Currently about 10-20 per cent of eggs consumed in California are imported. As a result, it is expected that egg prices will rise slightly, about 2 cents per egg. Eggs are big business in California; UC Davis researchers say we produce almost 5 billion eggs per year, and in 2007, the industry was worth $337 million.