Ohio’s biggest farms have agreed to a series of new restrictions on how they confine their animals, hoping to prevent a potentially losing ballot standoff with the Humane Society and other animal rights groups. Under the deal, no new egg farms will be built using extreme caging methods, and all farms will agree to slowly phase out the tight caging of pregnant sows and veal calves, the New York Times reports.
The victory could be just the beginning for the activists, who have championed successful ballot initiatives in California, Michigan, Arizona, and Florida. Afraid of facing a similar fate, Ohio’s farmers decided to strike a deal—not that they’re happy about it. “We all know change is coming,” says an Ohio farm executive. “But is this how we’re going to deal with these issues, on a state-by-state basis?” For now, it is. The Humane Society is already planning new pushes in Washington and Oregon.