Massachusetts Passes Bill To Prevent Egg, Poultry Shortage
Hey, folks, some(if you'll pardon the pun) egg-cellent news to pass along to you. Lawmakers in Massachusetts have passed a bill that prevents the Commonwealth from a major shortage of eggs, poultry, and pork.
The Associated Press reports state lawmakers agreed to add new standards to a 2016 voter-approved animal welfare law that required all eggs and meat farmed and sold in the Bay State to come from animals that were not confined to tight spaces.
On Monday, legislative branches agreed to a new bill that would update the standards not only for housing egg-laying poultry but it will also delay the start of a ban on the sale of pork products from animals in poor living conditions.
Governor Charlie Baker has been putting pressure on the legislature to pass this bill and prevent supply chain issues across the state. These changes could still happen at a later date, but this delay will at least allow farmers more time to prepare.
Industry representatives and some animal rights groups say that since 2016, industry standards have shifted substantially for the good. Most egg manufacturers now use systems that allow hens to move vertically and require less floor space.
The Humane Society, Animal Legal Defense Fund, Animal Rescue League of Boston, and Massachusetts Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals have all praised the bill's success in a joint statement.
However, not everyone is on board. Some animal rights groups are calling the bill a setback to animal protection. As for pork and pork products, the reform does not include any reforms or updates. It merely delays the voter-approved ban by more than seven months.
For more on the story, check out the Associated Press' website here.