Getty Images
Getty Images

WA residents have noticed egg prices have climbed considerably in 2024, many think it's due to the national inflation, but not entirely.

Cage-free egg law passed in 2019

Many people will not remember, but the WA state legislature passed a cage-free law, requiring chickens used for egg production to be housed in larger compartments. the new law requires at least 116 square inches per chicken, not quite a square foot, but larger than previous cages often utilized.

It was House Bill (HB) 2049.

The new law has created significant expenses for egg producers, the costs are now being reflected to consumers. The WA law not only applies to egg producers in-state, but also covers all eggs that might be purchased out-of-state and sold here.

They all have to be "cage-free."  Before the law went into effect consumers may have noticed that cage-free eggs have always been more expensive.

According to KIRO TV in Seattle, the average price of a typical 12-pack carton of eggs has risen by over $1,00.  Some stores in WA have seen even higher hikes in prices. For those who buy in bulk, the cases of eggs (usually five dozen) have seen as much as a $4 price increase. 

News Talk KIT logo
Get our free mobile app

  The law applies to producers who have 3,000 or more egg-producing chickens. The law was pushed through by supporters of what is called more 'humane' conditions for the birds.

The law has also been put into effect in Oregon.

LOOK: 30 fascinating facts about sleep in the animal kingdom

Gallery Credit: Katherine Gallagher

More From News Talk KIT