The coordinated efforts between the United Egg Producers and the Humane Society of the United States to legislate how laying hens should be housed was recently brought to my attention. As a farmer and rancher, I am all for the human treatment of all types of animals and livestock but I am NOT in favor of Congress legislating how I can care for my animals. That decision should be left to the farmers and ranchers that are on the farm and understand what is best for their animals. Below is the letter I recently sent to my legislator, Rep. Tim Huelskamp, R-Kansas. Rep. Huelskamp sits on the House Agriculture Committee and will be one of the first to hear this bill. I encourage everyone in animal agriculture to speak to their legislators about the dangerous precedent this legislation would set for animal care.
Rep. Tim Huelskamp,
My husband, Derek, and I raise crops and cattle on our fourth-generation farm outside McPherson, Kan. We have been very active in the agriculture community and have come to understand the impacts of legislation and regulations on our farm.
We have continued to fight against the U.S. Dept. of Labor’s proposed on-farm child labor laws and other redundant and ridiculous regulations proposed by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency.
And it seems we now have a new battle to fight, one that was started by one of our own.
I am sure you are aware of the proposed laying hen legislation put forward by a fellow member of the House Agriculture Committee, Rep. Kurt Schrader to codify an agreement between the United Egg Producers and the Humane Society of the United State (HSUS). Rep. Schrader has been quoted as saying he believes the legislation will improve the welfare of laying hens.
While we will always advocate for safe and healthy living conditions for all animals, we do not believe Washington should have any role in creating and regulating production practices. That should be left to the individuals on the farms.
If the legislation were to become law, it would set a dangerous precedent that would give Congress the authority to dictate how we as producers can raise our livestock. There are currently no federal statutes that direct production practices and we hope to keep it that way.
HSUS is a powerful and dangerous organization that is out to end production agriculture in this country and eventually remove all meat products from American’s dinner plates.
Please vote “No” for this proposal and protect animal agriculture.
Thank you for your time and consideration,
Sawyer Land & Cattle
929 11th Ave.
McPherson, KS 67460