Dealing with the aftermath of the avian flu outbreak

There were close to four million hens in the northwest Iowa egg-laying operation that was hit with the avian influenza this week.  Those birds have to be euthanized and disposed of which is, according to USDA chief veterinarian Dr. John Clifford, a huge and costly undertaking. “It’s a large volume of birds and you have… Read more »

March U.S. egg production up 1%

The USDA reports U.S. egg production during March 2015 was 8.53 billion eggs, up 1% from the March 2014 total. Most of the total was table eggs, 7.42 billion, with hatching eggs at 1.12 billion. Most of the hatching eggs, 1.03 billion, were for broiler type chickens, with the rest for egg type production. The… Read more »

Egg industry on high alert after Iowa outbreak

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The discovery of bird flu in a large Iowa egg laying facility has that industry on high alert. The farm in Osceola County in northwest Iowa has a capacity of 5.3 million hens, which represents nearly 10 percent of Iowa’s egg-laying hens and one percent of the nation’s egg layers. While those numbers are significant,… Read more »

Bird flu confirmed in Iowa egg laying facility

An outbreak of the avian flu virus has been confirmed in a commercial egg laying facility in Osceola County in extreme northwest Iowa. According to a news release from the Iowa Department of Agriculture and Land Stewardship, the Osceola County facility has 5.3 million hens. It’s the second case of the avian flu reported in… Read more »

Hilton announces changes to food supply chain

One of the world’s largest hotel chains is eliminating the use of cages for egg laying chickens and gestation stalls used in swine production from its global food supply chain.  Hilton Worldwide made the announcement in conjunction with the Humane Society of the United States earlier today. The changes would apply to all hotels in… Read more »

Egg prices skyrocketing in California

When California voters passed an initiative in 2008 to require the state’s poultry farmers to house hens in significantly larger cages, the California legislature realized it would put the state’s farmers at a disadvantage.  In 2010, it required that eggs imported from other states come from farms meeting the same cage requirements. That went into… Read more »

Iowa egg farm fire kills 150,000 hens

A Sunday evening fire at an egg farm in northern Iowa has killed 150-thousand hens.  No farm employees were injured.  The fire at the Centrum Valley Farms’ operation in Galt began in a barn where 75-thousand hens were housed.  Smoke from the fire also killed 75-thousand hens in an adjacent barn.  As of Monday afternoon,… Read more »

HSUS criticizes, Heineman fires back

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The Humane Society of the United States (HSUS) is criticizing the effort to block California’s law dictating how eggs that enter that state are being produced. HSUS president and CEO Wayne Pacelle accuses state officials of “political grandstanding” and “wasting taxpayer dollars,” He also accuses those states of “trying to force sub-standard products on California… Read more »

Nebraska joins Missouri’s lawsuit against California

The state of Nebraska is joining Missouri’s lawsuit challenging California’s egg production standards.  Specifically, that lawsuit seeks to block a California law requiring egg producers in other states to adhere to California’s larger cage size standards for egg-laying hens.  Nebraska is not a major egg-producing state, ranking only 12th nationally.  But Nebraska Governor Dave Heineman… Read more »

Iowa official predicts egg law challenge

Iowa secretary of agriculture Bill Northey says California’s law requiring other states to comply with California’s larger cage size requirements for egg-laying hens will not go unchallenged. “This will be addressed—Iowa is not going to back down and say that California can tell Iowa producers what to produce out here,” Northey says. “California can tell… Read more »