Learning from the mistakes of others
The National Association of Egg Farmers remains committed to retaining conventional cage systems and allowing U.S. egg farmers to produce eggs for the consumers in their markets without the dictates of a national law mandating production standards. This article from Farming UK (see website below) demonstrates the suffering resulting in Europe as a result of implementing their national egg law (EU Council Directive 1999/74/ED on January 1, 2012). The Germans moved even quicker than the whole of the European Union and implemented a new national law in 2010.
This article quotes Hans Wilhelm-Windhorst with the International Egg Commission saying that 30% of the German egg farmers will likely become insolvent by October. Prices have fallen to where producing eggs is unsustainable. It's interesting to note that Hans Wilhelm-Windhorst was a featured speaker at the January 2013 "Future of the Egg Industry" Forum in Atlanta during the IPPE and he reported the impact on German egg farmers in 2010 led to (1) a loss of egg production, (2) an increase in egg imports from other countries, (3) the forced foreclosure of many egg farms.
The article shown above in Farming UK reports that egg farmers in Europe need to increase their efficiency, and that consumers want a reduction in price. When the EU implemented their national egg law, egg farmers made the capital investments to meet the new law only to regret it later.
Will this mistake ever happen in this country? The National Association of Egg Farmers will fight to retain conventional cage systems for the most efficient and cost-effective method of producing a safe and wholesome egg in the U.S.