While 78% of Americans think way hens are raised is important, more than 170 million Americans don't know what term 'cage-free' means, says survey conducted on behalf of happy egg co.; more than 25% think 'cage-free' and 'free range' mean same thing
April 30, 2014
– The egg-case is in disarray. Lack of federal labeling standards and misuse of category terminology such as "cage-free," "organic" and "free range" has led to mass consumer egg carton confusion. According to a recent Kelton Research survey, though 78 percent of Americans think the way hens are raised is important, over 170 million Americans don't know what the term "cage-free" actually means. Adding to this confusion, more than one-quarter of Americans think "cage-free" and "free range" mean the same thing.*
the happy egg co. feels it is important for consumers that egg carton labeling is made clear:
CAGED: Between 90-95 percent of eggs in the U.S. come from hens that live their entire lives in battery cages with around 8.5 inches by 8.5 inches of space per hen -- for a bird with a 30 inch wingspan. That's smaller than standard printer paper!
CAGE-FREE: Over one-third of Americans incorrectly think "cage-free" means hens spend most of their time outdoors on pasture. Though a cage-free hen does not live in a wire cage, it does live its entire life within the confines of a barn, with little to no exposure to the outdoors.
FREE-RANGE: Standards are developing but still unregulated. HFAC's Certified Humane® "Free Range" requirement is 2 square feet per bird. The hens must be outdoors, weather permitting, for at least 6 hours per day. Unfortunately, some cage-free producers still use the label although their hens roam indoors, capitalizing on the lack of labeling regulations.
THE HAPPY EGG STANDARD: the happy egg co. surpasses the 2 square feet requirement set forth by Certified Humane and HFAC, while offering an expansive 14 square feet per bird. Plus the hens roam outdoors on pasture every day! Currently there is no label for this higher free range standard, so at the happy egg co. we call it "Certified Happy."
Free Range on pasture eggs from the happy egg co. come from hens who receive daily access to at least four acres of lush green pasture and expert care from family farmers. "The Girls" spend every day outdoors in natural sunlight, flapping, perching, foraging and dust-bathing.
the happy egg co. goes well beyond HFAC's Certified Humane requirements for Free Range hens and plans to expand even further in the coming months. Educating consumers on the reality of this industry is a top priority for the happy egg co. to define what truly Free Range eggs mean.
Free Range on pasture eggs from the happy egg co. are conveniently available in more than 1,800 grocery stores in 33 states across the U.S. Packaged in a sunshine-yellow carton, made of 100 percent recycled and compostable material, happy eggs stand out for their color and clarity in the egg aisle.
For more information about the happy egg co., including where to buy, visit thehappyeggco.com.
*Survey was conducted by Kelton, a leading global insights firm, on behalf of the happy egg co. among 1,011 nationally representative Americans ages 18 and over.