retail news in context, analysis with attitude

The Los Angeles Times reports that California state regulations recently approved by voters there that "requires chicken farmers to give their egg-laying birds enough room to stand and spread their wings" could be "going national." The story notes that "in a rare alliance, the Humane Society of the United States and egg ranchers have joined forces to lobby for federal legislation that would set national standards for egg ranches."

The California initiative, the story suggests, forced egg ranchers to see the light, realizing that consumer priorities were shifting and that they needed to shift with them.

"No question about it: Proposition 2 was a major wake-up call to the entire U.S. egg industry," Chad Gregory, senior vice president of United Egg Producers, tells the Times.

However, not everybody is happy. Some animal rights activists say they are concerned that a national standard could be less rigorous than California's, and that federal rules - because they would supplant state laws - could end up watering down hard-fought-for advances.
KC's View:
I have no idea whether the cynical view of this alliance is accurate. My first instinct is that it is smart to pursue a national approach to such regulations, but I have to respect - with a certain amount of bemusement - the inclination to believe that behind every positive initiative lies some sort of Machiavellian plan to actually deprive people/animals of their rights.