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hidden cage eggs in processed food

12.10.2018

Hens still suffer in narrow cages

Whether cookies, pasta or mayonnaise, many food products contain eggs. Often, these eggs stem from farms where hens live cooped up in small cages. Although the majority of consumers are opposed to battery farming and almost all retailers have removed fresh cage eggs from their shelves, we are unknowingly still eating eggs produced in cages. So while stopping the sale of fresh cage eggs in supermarkets signalled an important victory for animal welfare, this has been just the first step. FOUR PAWS has launched a new campaign aimed at increasing awareness about the eggs we cannot see in processed food.

Call for compulsory declaration on egg origin

Twelve EU countries still do not comply with the ban on conventional battery farming – so it is no surprise that illegal cage eggs in the form of liquid eggs or egg powder end up in processed foods. Moreover, producers of processed food are not obliged to disclose the origin of the eggs used in their products. Consumers therefore cannot check the farming conditions they support when buying certain products. FOUR PAWS calls for a compulsory declaration on the origin of eggs used in processed foods.

Millions of CAGED hens
Continue to suffer

An EU Directive banned battery cages from 2012 and permits only 'enriched cages' that allow laying hens 750 cm² of space instead of the 550 cm² previously allotted. Enriched or not: any natural behavior is almost impossible in such a restricted, narrow environment.

FOUR PAWS advocates the EU-wide withdrawal of all cage systems for laying hens. We call on food manufacturers to change their procurement policies and refrain from using cage eggs in their products. Retailers should also stop the sale of food products containing cage eggs. Instead, we urge the processed food industry to shift to using eggs exclusively from free-range farms.   

A world of conscious food choices awaits!