Tuesday, January 16, 2007

Free Range Eggs - what are they? Consumer Survey

We've had a good response to the survey on what free range egg buyers think they are buying. Some of the early results have been collated and are published on this Blog, but we would like more input.

In many parts of the world there is no real national definition of the term free range which means the same to you as it does to producers. It is helping to get a meaningful definition by getting the industry to understand what consumers think free range eggs are.

In New South Wales a definition is published on the website of the Department of Primary Industries - but it is not enforced!

Please take a little time to respond with your thoughts about what “Free Range” means to you.
For example:

Do you think free range hens forage over pasture during most daylight hours?

Do you think there is a limit on the number of hens in one shed or on one area of land? If so how many hens and how large should the area of land be?

Do you think free range hens are de-beaked (or beak trimmed)?

Do you look for accreditation details on the label to ensure that the eggs you buy are really free range?

Is it OK to use lighting to extend daylight hours in free range sheds (to increase the numbers of eggs laid) ?

Do you buy free range eggs because: they taste better; more humane treatment of animals; or some other reason?

Where do you buy your free range eggs; from a supermarket, health food shop, local store, direct from a farm or do you have home delivery?

Please write as much or as little as you like on each topic and feel free to add any additional thoughts.

Email address: freeranger@dcsi.net.au

website: www.freeranger.com.au

Here is a transcript from an Australian TV program which details many of the concerns facing consumers and legitimate free range producers

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