New Zealand is to phase out battery hens by 2022. The new Code of Conduct will allow hens to be kept in colony cages – a larger cage – or in barns. Whilst greater freedom for hens is to be welcomed, the Panel favours free range egg hens. In Australia, the dramatic increase in market share of free range eggs in the last decade, the Bills for free range marketing in the NSW and SA Parliaments; the Queensland Animal Welfare Regulation prescribing 1500 hens per hectare as ‘free range’; the move in Tasmania to phase out battery hens; the announcement by Coles to subsidise the cost of free range eggs and not sell battery hen eggs after 2013, and the increasing consumer preference and awareness for animals raised humanely, all point to a viable free range alternative as the means of egg production in Australia. In England for example only free range eggs can now be purchased at supermarkets.
You can read the full report here.