•  Summary 
  •  Actions 
  •  Committee Votes 
  •  Floor Votes 
  •  Memo 
  •  Text 
  •  LFIN 
  •  Chamber Video/Transcript 

A00107 Summary:

SPONSORRosenthal L
Add §160-f, Art 13-A Art Head, Ag & Mkts L
Requires a farm owner or operator that produces shell eggs or liquid eggs for human consumption to confine egg-laying hens in a cage-free housing system.
Go to top

A00107 Memo:

submitted in accordance with Assembly Rule III, Sec 1(f)
SPONSOR: Rosenthal L
  TITLE OF BILL: An act to amend the agriculture and markets law, in relation to provid- ing for cage-free egg production   PURPOSE: This bill will require all eggs sold in New York State to come from cage-free and free-range environments.   SUMMARY OF SPECIFIC PROVISIONS: Section one contains the legislative findings. Section two amends the agriculture and markets law by adding a new section 160-f. Section three establishes the effective date.   JUSTIFICATION: Most egg-laying hens in the United States are confined in battery-cage systems, wire cages where as many as five to ten hens are housed their entire lives to produce eggs. Inside these cramped cages, each hen is only afforded an average of 60-75 square inches of space, smaller than the size of a standard piece of paper. The space is so small that it restricts the hens from being able to move about or spread their wings, causing severe deterioration of their muscles and bones. The overcrowd- ing of these cages also causes the birds to lose their feathers and prevents them from performing some of their natural behaviors, such as nesting, perching and dustbathing. In recent years, consumers have increasingly called for more humane conditions for animals used in agriculture. Several countries around the world have banned the use of battery cages, gestation crates and veal crates, yet the animal agriculture industry in the United States has been slower to respond. In fact, 95% of eggs sold in the United States continue to come from battery-caged hens. This legislation will force a more humane industry in New York State by requiring all eggs sold in the state be produced in cage-free and free- range systems.   LEGISLATIVE HISTORY: 2021-22: A3630 - Referred to Agriculture; S.6971 - Referred to Agricul- ture 2019-20: A.11041- Referred to Agriculture   FISCAL IMPLICATIONS: Undetermined.   EFFECTIVE DATE: This act shall take effect twenty-four months after it shall have become a law.
Go to top

A00107 Text:

                STATE OF NEW YORK
                               2023-2024 Regular Sessions
                   IN ASSEMBLY
                                     January 4, 2023
        Introduced  by  M.  of  A. L. ROSENTHAL -- read once and referred to the
          Committee on Agriculture
        AN ACT to amend the agriculture and markets law, in relation to  provid-
          ing for cage-free egg production
          The  People of the State of New York, represented in Senate and Assem-
        bly, do enact as follows:
     1    Section 1. Legislative findings and  intent.  The  legislature  hereby
     2  finds the following:
     3    a.   According  to  the  Pew  Commission  on  Industrial  Farm  Animal
     4  Production, food animals that are treated  well  and  provided  with  at
     5  least  minimum  accommodation  of  their  natural behaviors and physical
     6  needs are healthier and safer for human consumption.
     7    b. A key finding from the World Health Organization and Food and Agri-
     8  cultural Organization of the United Nations Salmonella  Risk  Assessment
     9  was  that  reducing  flock prevalence results in a directly proportional
    10  reduction in human health risk.
    11    c. Egg-laying hens subjected to stress are more likely to have  higher
    12  levels  of pathogens in their intestines and the conditions increase the
    13  likelihood that consumers will be exposed to higher levels of food-borne
    14  pathogens.
    15    d. Salmonella is the most commonly diagnosed food-borne illness in the
    16  United States.
    17    e. It is the intent of the legislature to protect consumers  from  the
    18  deleterious,  health,  safety,  and  welfare  effects  of  the  sale and
    19  consumption of eggs derived from egg-laying hens  that  are  exposed  to
    20  significant  stress  and  may  result  in  increased exposure to disease
    21  pathogens including salmonella.
    22    § 2. The agriculture and markets  law  is  amended  by  adding  a  new
    23  section 160-f to read as follows:
         EXPLANATION--Matter in italics (underscored) is new; matter in brackets
                              [ ] is old law to be omitted.

        A. 107                              2

     1    §  160-f.  Cage-free  egg  production.  1.  Notwithstanding  any other
     2  provision of law:
     3    a.  A farm owner or operator shall not confine or cause to be confined
     4  an egg-laying hen in an enclosure other than a cage-free housing system.
     5    b. No person shall sell or contract to sell a shell egg or liquid  egg
     6  for  human consumption if the seller knows or should have known that the
     7  shell egg or liquid egg is the product of an  egg-laying  hen  that  was
     8  confined  in a manner that is inconsistent with the requirements of this
     9  section, regardless of whether the shell egg or liquid egg was  produced
    10  in or out of the state.
    11    2. This section shall not apply to any of the following:
    12    a. Medical research;
    13    b. Examination, testing, individual treatment, or operation for veter-
    14  inary purposes by a licensed veterinarian;
    15    c. Transportation of an egg-laying hen;
    16    d. State or county fair exhibitions and similar exhibitions;
    17    e.  4-H  programs  administered  by the National Institute of Food and
    18  Agriculture of the United States department of agriculture  and  similar
    19  youth programs;
    20    f.  Slaughter  of an egg-laying hen in accordance with applicable laws
    21  and regulations; or
    22    g. Temporary periods for animal husbandry purposes of no more than six
    23  hours in any twenty-four-hour period, and no more than twenty-four hours
    24  in any thirty-day period.
    25    3. For purposes of this section:
    26    a. "Cage-free housing system" means an indoor  or  outdoor  controlled
    27  environment for an egg-laying hen within which:
    28    (i)  An egg-laying hen is free to roam unrestricted except by exterior
    29  walls;
    30    (ii) An egg-laying hen is provided with, at a minimum, the  amount  of
    31  usable  floor  space  per  hen  required  by  the two thousand seventeen
    32  edition of the united egg producers'  animal  husbandry  guidelines  for
    33  United States egg-laying flocks: guidelines for cage-free production, or
    34  a  subsequent version of such guidelines recognized by the department in
    35  a rule or regulation which provides equal or more usable floor space per
    36  egg-laying hen.
    37    (iii) An egg-laying hen is provided enrichments that allow  a  hen  to
    38  exhibit  natural  behaviors,  including, at a minimum, a scratch area, a
    39  perch, a nest box, and a dust bathing area;
    40    (iv) A farm employee can provide care while standing somewhere  within
    41  a hen's usable floor space; and
    42    (v)  Each  egg-laying hen is provided unlimited access to the outdoors
    43  in a safe and secure environment that prevents access to predators.
    44    b. "Commercial farm" means the land, building, and support  facilities
    45  that  are  used for the commercial production of eggs intended for human
    46  consumption.
    47    c. "Egg-laying hen" means a female domesticated chicken, turkey, duck,
    48  goose, or guinea fowl kept for the purpose of egg production.
    49    d. "Farm owner or operator" means any person who owns or controls  the
    50  operation of a commercial farm.
    51    e.  "Liquid  egg"  means  an  egg of an egg-laying hen broken from the
    52  shells that is intended for human consumption, with the yolks and whites
    53  in their natural proportions, or with the yolks  and  whites  separated,
    54  mixed,  or  mixed  and  strained. Liquid eggs do not include combination
    55  food products, including pancake mixes,  cake  mixes,  cookies,  pizzas,
    56  cookie  dough, ice cream, or similar processed or prepared food products

        A. 107                              3
     1  that are comprised of more than liquid eggs, sugar, salt, water, season-
     2  ing, coloring, flavoring, preservatives, stabilizers, and  similar  food
     3  additives.
     4    f.  "Shell-egg"  means  a  whole egg of an egg-laying hen in its shell
     5  form that is intended for human consumption.
     6    g. "Usable floor space" means the total square footage of floor  space
     7  provided to each egg-laying hen, calculated by dividing the total square
     8  footage  of  floor  space  in an enclosure by the number of hens in that
     9  enclosure and shall include ground space and elevated  level  or  nearly
    10  level  platforms  to accommodate egg flow upon which a hen can roost but
    11  shall not include any perch or ramp.
    12    4. The department shall inspect at reasonable times  commercial  farms
    13  engaged  in  the  production  of  eggs  for the purpose of enforcing the
    14  provisions of this section.
    15    5. The department shall promulgate such rules and regulations  as  are
    16  necessary and appropriate to carry out the provisions of this section.
    17    6.  A violation of this section shall be punishable by a civil penalty
    18  of up to five thousand dollars for the first violation and up  to  twen-
    19  ty-five  thousand dollars for any subsequent violation. Any civil penal-
    20  ties collected pursuant to this section shall  be  paid  to  the  animal
    21  population  control  fund  established by section ninety-seven-xx of the
    22  state finance law.
    23    7. The commissioner may institute such action at law or in  equity  as
    24  may  appear  necessary to enforce compliance with any provisions of this
    25  section or of the rules and regulations promulgated thereunder, and,  in
    26  addition  to  any  other  remedy  under article three of this chapter or
    27  otherwise, may apply for relief by injunction without being compelled to
    28  allege or prove that an adequate remedy at  law  does  not  exist.  Such
    29  application  may  be made to the supreme court in any district or county
    30  as provided in the civil practice law and rules, or to the supreme court
    31  in the third judicial district.
    32    8.  Nothing  in  this  section  shall  be  construed  to  affect   any
    33  protections  afforded  to  animals  under any other provisions of law or
    34  rules or regulations.
    35    9. Nothing in this section shall be construed  to  prevent  any  town,
    36  city,  village  or county in New York state from enacting a local law or
    37  ordinance to provide for the  humane  treatment  of  and  prevention  of
    38  cruelty  to  animals, provided, however, that no such law shall conflict
    39  with the provisions of this section.
    40    § 3. Article 13-A of the agriculture and markets law,  is  amended  by
    41  adding a new article heading to read as follows:
    42                                SALE OF EGGS
    43  §  4.  This act shall take effect twenty-four months after it shall have
    44  become a law. Effective  immediately,  the  addition,  amendment  and/or
    45  repeal  of  any  rule  or regulation necessary for the implementation of
    46  this act on its effective date are authorized to be made  and  completed
    47  on or before such effective date.
Go to top