Massive egg shortage predicted if state legislature doesn’t pass bill before Jan. 1st

Boston Statehouse

BOSTON (WWLP) – Starting January 1st, the price of eggs in the Commonwealth could skyrocket and the state’s supply could dwindle if lawmakers don’t reach an agreement on one particular bill.

The legislature has gone back and forth for months now on the state’s regulations around egg laying hens. Under the bill approved by both the House and Senate, which was later put on the statewide ballot, egg laying hens are required to have at least 1.5 square feet of floor space per bird.

Sales of eggs produced by hens in smaller enclosures regardless of whether they are in Massachusetts or another state will be prohibited when the new regulations start unless a six member conference committee on Beacon Hill acts now.

Governor Baker put pressure on the conference committee earlier this week tweeting, “Everyone is already paying too much at the grocery store and not addressing this egg supply issue will further drive up costs. I urge lawmakers to reach consensus soon before these rules go into effect in January.”

Animal rights groups and commercial egg farmers have clashed for years over this issue but now the two groups seem to support the new initiative. Governor Baker said he’s hoping to see the bill land on his desk either this week or the beginning of next week to allow egg producers across the state to adapt to this change.

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