Special Report

Egg producer favors proposed farm bill measure

Joe MillerA United Egg Producers (UEP) member says the so-called egg bill proposed to be part of the next farm bill will provide an important standard across the U.S.

Joe Miller, the general counsel for egg producer Rose Acre Farms, says statutes in several states left questions that resulted in virtually halting the construction of new chicken houses because producers don’t know what to build. Those statutes stipulated cage sizes, but they differed from state to state. Miller told Brownfield Ag News that the proposed measure fixes that.

“States can’t pass state laws that say you have to have a certain cage size, such as California, Oregon, the state of Washington, Michigan and Ohio, [which] have all passed statutes saying that if you use cages, they have to be a certain size,” said Miller Wednesday, at the Animal Agriculture Alliance (AAA) Stakeholders Summit in Arlington, Va. “It’s just that all their sizes are different.”

More importantly, said Miller, the bill, a controversial compromise between the UEP and the Humane Society of the United States (HSUS), allows what Miller said the animal activist group has opposed for years – cages.

“This legislation says that there is a standard size for cages that HSUS has accepted, ‘yes, it’s ok to have chickens in cages,’” he said.

Miller was part of the program during the AAA Stakeholder’s Summit.

AUDIO: Joe Miller (6 min. MP3)

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  • Can you spell “sell out”? The proposed federal egg bill is the greatest betrayal of chickens EVER. If passed in its current form this bill would:

    1. Overturn California’s hard-won Proposition 2 (which got 63% of the vote);
    2. Prohibit any future state ballot initiatives to improve conditions for egg-laying hens; and
    3. Enshrine battery cages FOREVER–the chickens never allowed to enjoy the sunshine or set foot to earth before slaughter.

    I’ve been in one of those facilities. 100,000 birds under one roof, with no veterinary care, pumped full of drugs. The ammonia stench alone is enough to knock you down. And a major cause of asthma in children in California’s central valley, reportedly.

    And those “enriched” cages are a brutal joke. See the YouTube videos if in doubt: an inch-high “perch” on the floor of the cage and a tiny plastic “nesting shelf” on one wall of the cage.

    There are many animal organizations opposed to this nonsense: Humane Farming Association (stoptherotteneggbill.org), United Poultry Concerns, Friends of Animals, Farm Animal Reform Movement, Ed Duvin’s “Animal Lines, Action for Animals, God and others. And probably the Animal Welfare Institute and In Defense of Animals. (Give them a call to confirm.)

    The chickens (and the public) deserve far better than this mis-guided legislation. The mere fact that the egg industry itself is in support should be a red flag for everyone.

    This legislation deserves a humane death.

    Eric Mills, coordinator

  • Eric Mills…..BRAVO! Spoken like a person with a truly NARROW and SHORT sighted perspective. Wayne Pacelle is a man with superior long term vision, excellent strategic skills and accomplishments too numerous to count. I have read H.R 1731…..and I hope it passes. Peter Singer, Gene Baur(Farm Sanctuary) and Wayne Pacelle(HSUS) are among the supporters of this bill. This is only the beginning.

  • Eric Mills….BRAVO! Spoken like a person with a superior mind and a moral compass. Spoken like a person that truly gets what Wayne Pacelle’s HSUS is all about. The number of animal people who are repulsed by him has been growing by leaps and bounds.

    Wayne Pacelle has done more damage to the credibility of animal welfare and animal rights than anyone – he even makes his HSUS mentor, disgraced televangelist and con artist Paul Irwin look good. The centerpiece of his long-term vision is Wayne Pacelle, not animals. His strategic decisions and poor judgement have backfired many, many times, inspiring right to hunt and anti hunter harassment laws in nearly every state. HSUS has given ammunition to ag gag bill advocates. While I oppose the bills in their current form, HSUS has only itself to blame for their cropping up. Not because HSUS is so effective at exposing animal cruelty (Humane Farming Association and Mercy For Animals are), but because HSUS experts lied to Congress in the Westland Hallmark case about their POST-investigation delay in notifying the USDA. HSUS also falsely accused Korean restaurants of serving dog stew and convinced a New York consumer reporter to expose it. The resulting lawsuit was settled by the TV station for a significant amount, since HSUS is exempt from accountability in these matters due to it’s 501(c)3 status. (The award-winning reporter lost her job over it). There are many other instances of HSUS’s manipulating the facts to damage their enemies, going back to the 1970’s and made-up accusations against zoos and the American Zoological Association.

    Pacelle and Michael Markarian’s strategic skills in the Feld Entertainment case – and upcoming RICO trial – has been criticized for a decade by the journalists who publish the outstanding Animal People newspaper. Animal People also opposes the rotten egg bill, as does the Humane Farming Association, which is anything but a fringe group. It is the most ethical and effective farm animal advocacy group in the country, and I am proud to be a member. BRAVO Bradley Miller for describing Wayne Pacelle’s character and motivations better than I ever could, and backing it all out with indisputable evidence. Pacelle’s decades-long history of exaggerated claims, brazen lies, theft of credit, relentless self-aggrandizement, fundraising scandals, and sabotage of superior animal organizations are legendary- and too numerous to count.

    His idol Peter Singer is on record wanting companion animals phased out because they have to eat other animals to survive. Pacelle’s contempt for dogs and cats is part of the reason HSUS uses them as cash cows – while spending that money on rotten bills, vicious lawsuits, PR, factory fundraising, and trying to destroy those who expose where HSUS donations really go. Stealing from dog and cats and their protectors in order to expand political power with bad legislation is as bad as it gets.

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