Thursday, January 28, 2016

Cage free eggs won't be cheap

Right now, the US market has about 300 million laying hens, and only about eight percent of them are cage-free, according to this story in Wired.

In 2014, the US as a whole produced nearly 100 billion eggs, totaling $10.2 billion in revenue. This kind of mass production depends on cages. With those tiny wire boxes, farmers can micromanage everything about a bird’s life. They can even help automate egg collection by forcing the bird to lay its eggs directly into a funnel that drops down into a collection area.

Today, eggs are widely available and cheap mostly because of caging systems.


Paula said...

Good article. Shows how trying to do better and better got so crazy, sort of my theme lately. Protecting chickens = good. Keeping them in cages so small they can't stand up for their whole life = bad. Where was the common sense?

Norma said...

I suspect they'll need a new breeding program to create poultry that isn't dependent on antibiotics. However, they are pretty vicious and can injure each other. I suppose that requires some selective breeding too. UK has about 45% cage free according to another article.