The Baby Business: In Search Of The Golden Egg
In March of 1999, an ad was placed in the student newspapers of Harvard, Princeton, Stanford, the University of Pennsylvania, and Yale: "Help our dream come true. A loving, caring couple seeking egg donor. Candidates should be intelligent, athletic, blonde, at least 5'10", have a 1400+ SAT score, and possess no major family medical issues. $50,000" (Demand Media Inc.). I can only imagine eyebrows being raised as female students, on all five campuses, read this ad. The first report of egg donation in the United States was in July of 1983, with the subsequent birth taking place on February 3, 1984. Women who choose to donate their eggs are compensated on average up to $8,000. Some would say that it is a win-win situation; a loving couple have their opportunity to give birth to a child, and the donor is reimbursed financially.
Egg donation in the United States has flourished significantly in recent years. There has been a twenty percent increase since 2003, and egg donation doubled in 2009 over the three previous years. Egg Donation expert Liza Mundy stated "Today, most donors are young women in need of cash and, because some donors are 'paid a lot' - based on physical and intellectual characteristics, such as an Ivy League diploma - private commercial agencies have gotten more aggressive in procuring eggs" (Liza Mundy). There is no doubt in my mind that the egg donation industry targets college women. These women are being lured into donating their eggs for moneymaking purposes and not the right reason, which is to help somebody have a baby.
Egg donation, or should I say egg selling, is a major part of the $3 billion dollar industry of assisted reproductive technology in the United States. The...