I know this doesn't apply to the backyard keeper as much, but I know many of you are keeping your own chickens in response to the horrible ways the commercial egg facilities are allowed to keep chickens. I found this article in DVM magazine (May 2012) and found this information to be at least a step in the right direction. Bill H.R.3798 also known as the Egg Products Inspection Act Amendments. U.S. egg producers will have to switch to hen cages nearly twice their current size and those cages will need to be equipped with perches, ensting boxes and other environmental enrichment tools to encourage natural behaviors for the hens. Additionally, the bill requires that euthanasia of egg-laying hens meet guidelines the AVMA has deemed humane and acceptable, that labels be placed on egg cartons detiling information about the hens' living conditions and that ammonia concentrations be limited in the hen-houses. The bill is to be phased in over 9-15 years. Supported by the AVMA (American Veterinary Medical Association), American Association of Avian Pathologists and sweveral animal welfare groups, including the American Society for the Prevetion of Cruelty to Animals and the World Society for the Protection of Animals. The bill is opposed by The American Farm Bureau Federation because it attempts to replace science-based animal care practicies with animal rights-driven federal control. Lets hope this passes and that it promotes even more change in the commercial chicken industry!