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Leading Egg Farmer Files Lawsuit

Fresno, CA– A Central Valley egg producer filed a lawsuit today against the State of California seeking a better understanding of Proposition 2, the legislation that sets minimum standards for the size of hen cages.


The suit filed by J.S West in Fresno County Superior Court, is only asking for clarity on what Proposition 2 requires and not challenging the legality of the law.


“We need clear regulations for hen housing so our company and our industry knows exactly how much space to provide for egg-laying hens and what type of housing systems will be legal,” said Jill Benson, a JS West vice president and family member. She added, “We aren’t challenging the law but simply asking for the legal standards so we know how to comply.”


The lawsuit said the law does not provide specific housing requirements, including the size or the number of hens that can occupy a cage.


JS West is one of California’s leading egg farmers that recently spent millions of dollars on new cages.  The Modesto-based company believes the new living area complies with Proposition 2.


California is the nation’s fifth largest egg producer. Each year, more than 19 million laying hens produce more than 4.9 billion eggs in the state.


Written by tina.falco@mlode.com