New free-range egg standard favours interests of industry

March 31, 2016

Disgraceful, but as predicted, the meeting of Consumer Affairs Ministers today on the free-range egg labelling debate has resulted in a national definition that plays directly into the interests of intensive producers and supermarkets, at the expense of animal welfare. Adopting the preferred model of Egg Farmers Australia and the NSW Farmers Egg Committee, facilities can be considered 'free range' with maximum stocking densities of 10,000 hens per hectare (one hen per square metre). Along with the failure to impose bans on invasive procedures and forced moulting (see Sentient's submission), we believe this stocking density is inconsistent with good welfare. It is also at odds with calls from consumer group Choice, who are advocating for a 1,500-hen per hectare stocking density. Please support their petition to the Consumer Affairs Ministers to boycott this decision.  




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