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Give free range producers confidence to invest, supermarkets urged

Supermarkets need to reveal their procurement plans after pledges to stop selling eggs from caged hens in 2025


Alex   Black

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Alex   Black
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Give free range producers confidence to invest, supermarkets urged

Supermarkets must be clear on their egg procurement plans to give free-range producers confidence to help replace the 775 million eggs from caged hens on shelves each year.

 

This was the message from British Free-Range Egg Producers Association (BFREPA) chief executive Robert Gooch at its annual conference in Birmingham yesterday (October 5), following pledges from retailers to only source eggs from non-caged hens from 2025.

 

Investment

 

Mr Gooch said free-range producers were not afraid to invest, but needed the confidence there would be a market.

 

He said: “The free-range sector has grown rapidly to occupy about 60 per cent market share of retail egg sales, produced by more than 20m hens.

 

“We are perfectly positioned to deliver what retailers and major food brands need, and we urge them to make British free-range eggs a major part of their sourcing policy going forward.”

 


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Earlier this year, a BFREPA report estimated a 5 per cent increase in demand from major retailers in 2025 would require an additional 1.8m hens and £58m in investment.

 

He added the case for sourcing more British produce was ‘overwhelming’, with the Fipronil scandal in imported Dutch eggs highlighting the risks of relying on imports.

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