Even though Senate Ag Committee chair Debbie Stabenow has apparently backed off on plans to incorporate the so-called "egg bill" language into the Senate farm bill markup, Colin Woodall of the National Cattlemen's Beef Association says the battle is far from over.
"Late word is the language has been removed," Woodall says. "But now we are worried about an amendment situation where an amendment could be offered either during the committee markup of the farm bill, or possibly on the floor of the Senate, that would also try to get that agreement put back in.
"So even though we've had kind of a short-term victory, it looks like, we're still prepared to fight this as we move forward with the Senate farm bill process."
Woodall disagrees with arguments put forth by United Egg Producers and the Humane Society of the United States that the egg bill only involves the egg industry.
"This sets a precedent of Congress dictating, or mandating, a production practice to all of us in livestock-and all of us in production agriculture-and that's just unacceptable," he says.
According to Woodall, who is vice president of government affairs for NCBA, the Senate farm bill markup is expected to take place this Thursday.