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European Journal

Spain: The Egg Trade

Jobs have become scarce in Spain as a result of the economic crisis. Now some Spanish women are trying to earn a living by becoming a paid egg donor. In some cases, they are risking their health.

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Young university students are among those looking to become egg donors. They see it as an easy way to earn money - up to 1,000 euros per donation. Many women donate several times a year, even though doing so is risky to their health. Although Spain’s ethics commission has enacted limits on egg donation, these are nearly impossible to enforce, in part because donated eggs are a lucrative business for fertility clinics. Even though Spain is regarded as a stronghold of Catholicism, its laws on reproductive medicine are among the most liberal.