Tuesday, December 10, 2013

Free range court battles - ACCC acts

At last the Australian Competition and Consumer Commission has taken action against a couple of big egg producers who claim that the eggs they sell are 'free range'. The industry knows that this con has been going on for years, but it became big business - worth millions - once some of the smart operators interpreted a clause in the Appendix to the Model Code of Practice for the Welfare of Animals - Domestic Poultry as allowing an unlimited stocking density on free range farms.
The Code actually limits outdoor stocking densities to 1500 hens per hectare - but the guys chasing dollars chose to interpret a clause relating to meat birds as also applying to egg laying hens. They were dreaming, but (for them) it made sense for their bottom lines. The difference of course is that stocking density for meat birds is not as relevant as they are sent off to the abattoir when they are five or six weeks old so they hardly have any time out of the sheds in which they were raised.
Keep it up ACCC !!!!

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

Good news indeed. As a battling free range egg farmer, it is not fair to face competition from these intensive corporations as well as from backyarders who don't meet the same standards.