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Tesco turn their back on cages

News Section Icon Published 13/07/2016

Compassion is delighted that Tesco has announced its commitment to stop sourcing whole shell eggs from caged hens by 2025. With 43% of the 1.4 billion eggs sold by Tesco each year, we estimate this new policy will improve the lives of nearly 2 million egg-laying hens per year.

Following the recent wave of US retailers pledging to go cage-free, it’s great to see like-minded UK retailers like Tesco following suit.

Nearly 20 million laying hens in the UK are currently kept in cages, denying them some of the most basic behaviours such as perching, dustbathing and investigating their surroundings by pecking, scratching and foraging.

Leading the way

Tesco’s commitment reflects a leadership position over the remaining UK retailers that still sell caged eggs such as ASDA, Morrisons, Lidl and Aldi. With 28% of the market share in the UK, this move to drive cages out of modern egg production must surely signal the end of cages for laying hens in the UK.

Dr Tracey Jones, Director of Food Business at Compassion said: “It is fantastic that Tesco are to go cage-free by 2025 and I would like to congratulate them for their bold commitment, and for doing the right thing for laying hens. We have worked with Tesco for nearly two decades, helping to influence and educate their views on animal welfare. We look forward to continuing that relationship and advising on how to ensure the production system changes required to go cage-free will offer the hens a good quality of life in rich and stimulating environments.”

“It is large companies such as Tesco that can really help to make noticeable and impactful changes and I hope that this will be the catalyst needed for all other UK retailers to follow their lead and phase out cages for good.”

You can read more about cage-free egg production, or apply for a Good Egg Award, here.


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