The retailer sells 800 million eggs each year
Sainsbury’s will become the first major UK retailer to move to 100 per cent free range eggs, with all eggs sold in store and online to be sourced from free range UK farms from April 2020.
It highlighted growing consumer demand for free range eggs, with figures from Kantar Worldpanel showing sales have grown by 12 per cent year on year adding over £10m in value while sales of barn and cage eggs dropped.
It follows the retailer being the first major retailer to go 100 per cent cage-free for eggs back in 2009. All Sainsbury’s own brand eggs come from RSPCA assured UK farms.
Judith Batchelar, director of Sainsbury’s brand, said: “We know our customers care about where their eggs come from and that they are responsibly sourced.
“We are committed to offering the best possible quality and value while ensuring high welfare standards and helping to restore the environment at the same time.
“That is why every egg we sell will soon be sourced from free range farms in the UK and we are confident our customers will be able to taste the difference.”
David Brass, owner of Sainsbury’s supplier The Lakes Free Range Eggs Co, said: “It is a privilege to work with Sainsbury’s to supply 100% high welfare free range eggs.
“This is a great example of Sainsbury’s holding the needs of its customers at the heart of the decisions it makes – delivering quality, sustainably produced eggs, whilst driving the highest standards of hen welfare and biodiversity through the planting of millions of trees for them to roam in.”
Robert Gooch, British Free Range Egg Producers Association (BFREPA) chief executive, said: “The British free range egg sector continues to go from strength to strength and we welcome this latest commitment from another major retailer.
“Free range eggs have traditionally been priced as a premium product with a budget egg also available on the shelf for consumers to choose.
“Our members are concerned about free range eggs potentially losing their premium status and we will continue to monitor the impact of this decision.”