California Eggs

When California egg producers, through the Association of California Egg Farmers (ACEF), challenged the legal validity of Proposition 2 a law regulating egg-laying hen enclosures, they lost. Now the battle they fought is being carried out by other states who object to the law which prohibits egg farmers in other states from selling to California. A "King Amendment" to the 2012 Farm Bill which would have exempted out-of-state egg farmers was struck down. <span style="line-height: 1.5em;">California imports approximately 40% of the eggs consumed in the state.</span>

The Association of California Egg Farmers (ACEF) is a statewide trade association representing California's egg farmers. ACEF serves as the voice for the egg farmer and the state's egg industry which produces approximately 5 billion eggs per year with approximately 20 million laying hens.

Per capita consumption
Currently, the top ten egg producing states (ranked by number of layers represented in thousands) are:

1- Iowa 52,302
6 - Texas 13,628
2 - Ohio 26,904
7 - Michigan 10,326
3 - Pennsylvania 24,392
8 - Minnesota 9,883
4 - Indiana 22,825
9 - Nebraska 9,271
5 - California 18,876
10 - Florida 9,232

The five largest egg producing states represent approximately 50% of all U.S. layers.
U.S. egg production during April 2012 was 6.54 billion table eggs, which is down slightly from last April's 6.56 billion table eggs.
Presently, there are 61 egg producing companies with 1 million plus layers that represents approximately 87% of the total production and 16 companies with greater than 5 million layers.
To date, there are approximately 179 egg producing companies with flocks of 75,000 hens or more. These companies represent about 95% of all the layers in the United States. In 1987, there were around 2,500 operations.** (Number of operations in 1987 include some contract farms and divisions.)
As of March 2012, cage-free production is 5.7 percent of the total U.S. flock size. Of this, 2.9% is organic and 2.8% is other.
In 2011, the average number of egg-type laying hens in the U.S. was 281 million. Flock size for May 1, 2012, was 283 million layers, increasing from last year's 281. Rate of lay per day on May 1, 2012 averaged 73.6 eggs per 100 layers, up 1% from last year.
Of the 219.54 million cases (estimated) of shell eggs produced in 2011: 69.7 million cases (31.7%) were further processed (for foodservice, manufacturing, retail and export); 125 million cases (56.9%) went on to retail; 17.56 million cases (8.0%) went for foodservices use; and 7.3 million (3.3%) were exported.
Exports of processed egg products for the first quarter of 2012 set a year-on-year record at $31.97 million, up 22.1% from the same period a year earlier, thanks largely to increase exports to EU-27, Mexico, Taiwan, and Canada. Table eggs export during the period were 20.89 million dozen value at $19.35 million, up 31.2% and 42.1% year on year, respectively.
Exports of processed egg products to Japan, the single most important export market for the U.S. egg products, decreased 7.7 percent year on year to $11.84 million, accounting for 37.0% of U.S. total export value worldwide. Exports to the EU-27 were $10.26 million, up 121.4% from the same period in 2011. Exports to Canada increased 16.7% to $1.54 million. Sales to Mexico reached $1.47 million, an increase of 174.4 year on year. Exports to south Korea decreased 30.4% to $1.16 million. Export sales to these top five markets were $26.29 or 82.3% of U.S. total sales worldwide. Table egg exports to Hong Kong, the top market for U.S. table eggs, reached 9.51 million dozen, an increase of 24.9% from the same period earlier. Exports to Canada, United Arab Emirates, Bahamas, 0.54 million dozen, Netherlands Antilles and Hong Kong totaled 17.20 million dozen, accounting for 82.3% of U.S. total exports worldwide.

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