Become a caring consumer Enriched Cages and Colony Eggs

Hens in an enriched cage


The GOOD news:

 There are no longer laying hens in tiny ‘barren’ cages which restrict every aspect of their natural behaviour in the UK.

The BAD news:

Hens in a traditional battery cage

However, millions of birds in are still kept in tiny barren cages in some EU member states. For more information on how you can make a difference to hen welfare and support British farmers, please look at our latest campaigns page.

Around 60% of caged eggs in the UK go into the processed food sector, more come into the UK in foreign imports, eg Italian pasta may contain Italian eggs from caged hens. YOU could inadvertently buy eggs from battery caged hens. READ your food labels and ask for products which contain free range eggs, British where possible.

The FUTURE:

The caged system did not disappear altogether in 2012 – many farmers use an enriched caged system, producing eggs described as ‘colony eggs’.

The enriched cage is designed to hold up to 90 birds and does give the hens more freedoms including:

  • Potential to nest - one end of the enriched cage has a small nesting area
  • Potential to roost - perches 3-4” high run along part of the cage
  • Potential to scratch - a small scratch area is provided with friable matter
  • Potential to stretch - the height and width of the cage allows for more freedom of movement

The enriched cage offers an improved environment over the barren battery cage, allowing them to perform the natural behaviours outlined above.

Where there is a continuing demand for caged eggs, we would rather they are produced in the UK than imported from countries where we may not have control over welfare.

Ultimately, we woud like all laying hens to be given access outdoors and with consumer support we aim to ensure that farmers continue to invest in small scale, free range systems.

HELP US TO HELP THE FARMERS PRODUCE THE EGGS WE WANT TO EAT

BUY BRITISH FREE RANGE EGGS

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