Iowa: Don't force stores to carry eggs from caged hens

Photo by Frank Loftus/The HSUS

Two identical bills currently moving through the Iowa state legislature would force most grocery stores to carry eggs from chickens cruelly confined in tiny cages.

Not only would these bills require business owners to sell a product their own customers find objectionable, they would unnecessarily prop up the cruel “battery cage” industry.

Right now, most egg-laying hens spend their entire lives confined in crowded battery cages that are so small, they can’t even spread their wings. Hundreds of leading grocers around the country have already decided not to support this cruel practice: Costco, Dollar Tree, Walmart and others are listening to consumer demand and have promised to end the sale of these eggs over the next few years.

HSB 623 and SF 2242 are an attempt by the factory farming industry to make it illegal for grocery chains to switch to exclusively cage-free eggs. Urge your legislators to oppose these desperate measures.

Please take a moment to call your state senator and representative now. Look up your legislators' phone numbers. You can say, “As your constituent, I urge you to oppose HSB 623 and SF 2242. The government shouldn’t force stores to carry products they and their customers don’t want—products that are unsafe, inhumane and hurt Iowa’s responsible family farmers.”

After your call, use the form below to send a follow-up message. Editing your message will help it stand out.

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Your Message

Dear Legislator,

As your constituent, I urge you to oppose HSB 623 and SF 2242. The government simply should not force stores to carry products they do not wish to sell and consumers don't want.

Keeping hens locked in crowded "battery cages" is inhumane and their eggs put consumers at risk. More than a dozen studies have shown that battery cage eggs result in higher rates of Salmonella. That's why hundreds of leading food providers, including Walmart, Dollar Tree, Costco and many more, have committed to only sell eggs from cage-free hens.

The pro-cage lobby has long opposed common sense legal reforms by saying that we should let the market decide. Now that the market has decided, these lobbyists are changing their tune. These bills would harm Iowa's responsible family farmers that are switching to cage-free or never used cages to begin with.

It's well-accepted that the government has a role in consumer protection and creating basic minimum standards in commerce. But it should not force private businesses to sell a product that owners and consumers alike reject as unsafe and unethical.

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This action alert is for U.S. residents. International advocates, please visit Humane Society International.


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