Californians: Vote yes on Proposition 12 to create a better life for farm animals across the country

October 12 2018

Soon California voters will have the chance to drastically improve the lives of farm animals not just in their own backyards, but across the entire country.

Proposition 12, a ballot measure on the November state ballot, would require cage-free housing and more living space for mother pigs, egg-laying hens, and veal calves farmed in California. 

It would also ensure that all veal, pork, and eggs sold in California come from farms that meet the same standards – meaning products sold from out-of-state producers must adhere to the improved requirements.

Pregnant pig in enriched group housing

If Prop 12 passes, it will be the strongest measure to prevent farm animal confinement in the world.

World Animal Protection is a proud member of YES on Prop 12, a coalition of animal organizations, veterinarians and veterinary clinics, family farms and animal shelters, farmworker organization, food safety groups, and more, advocating for the passage of Proposition 12

Why is Proposition 12 important?

Keeping farm animals like pigs, hens, and calves in cages is inhumane and causes enormous suffering and stress for these intelligent and social animals. They can’t move or behave naturally.

And this severe confinement can also increase food safety risks. 

Three-quarters of the world’s mother pigs are confined in steel cages for pregnancy, cages no bigger than the average fridge. Pigs in cages can’t turn around, socialize with other pigs or behave naturally.

Pregnant mother pigs live in cramped cages (gestation crates) where they can barely move with no enrichment

These cages are so cruel that California and nine other states have banned them, however most pork sold in California today comes from factory farms that continue to confine mother pigs in these cruel crates.

Proposition 12 would require that all meat sold in California from out-of-state producers must meet the same standards required of in-state producers.

The background

In 2008, California voters overwhelmingly voted in favor of Proposition 2, establishing that laying hens, mother pigs, and veal calves must have adequate room to stand up, lie down, turn around and stretch their limbs.

These standards also applied to all eggs sold in California, including those from out-of-state producers.

Prop 12 would take these standards even further to protect animals, by banning the use of cages in California for these animals altogether.

Chickens in a barn on a higher welfare chicken farm in Somerset, UK. Image provided by RSPCA

According to estimates, shifting to cage-free production only costs about a penny more per egg, while raising mother pigs outside of crates can make pork production more affordable.

California has consistently been a national leader for farm animals – and state voters now have the chance to do even more to protect them.

We encourage registered voters in California to stand up for farm animals by voting yes on Proposition 12 this Election Day, November 6!

Top image provided by RSPCA

California has consistently been a national leader for farm animals – and state voters now have the chance to do even more to protect them.