Posted: 21 September 2017
Foodstuffs announced today that following an extensive review of
its egg sourcing and animal welfare policies the business has
committed to a goal of being 100% cage free for eggs within 10
"We are committed to working with our suppliers toward our
goal to be 100% cage free for packaged eggs by the end of 2027"
says Steve Anderson, Managing Director, Foodstuffs (NZ)
Foodstuffs will increase customer communications around barn
raised and free range eggs. The merchandising teams will gradually
reduce the range of caged eggs on offer, and undertake a
promotional programme supporting the transition of the business to
cage free over the next few years.
"Foodstuffs has been proactive for many years in
responding to increased customer demand for free range and barn
raised eggs. Our Pams eggs have been cage free since 2008, and
sales of other free range and barn raised eggs have grown
significantly over the last decade," says Anderson. "Now we are
ready to take the next step - but we need to work closely with the
industry to make this happen.
"Our customers' expectations drive us every day to offer
products and services which meet a wide variety of needs including
availability, quality, food safety, provenance and animal welfare,
which is why we needed to take the time to review the business
before announcing our position," adds Anderson. "Ensuring the
correct balance could be achieved both environmentally, and in
terms of our egg producers' ability to supply, realise the cost of
their investment and manage the retail cost to customers was
The review confirmed that the industry needs Foodstuffs to
take a clear position on what types of eggs it will need for its
future customers so they can plan and prepare. The need for
realistic timelines was also identified - many suppliers will need
to change the way they currently farm.
Many suppliers have invested heavily in the colony style
of farming. Foodstuffs believes farmers need to recoup the costs of
these investments to allow them to invest further in cage free
Some suppliers will need to build different types of
infrastructure. "Giving the industry time to achieve this is
important as this will ensure our customers' needs can be met,"
says Anderson. "Eggs are a healthy essential on most households'
shopping list, so we need to ensure that we keep that egg-tray in
the fridge well-stocked."
"On balance we believe 10 years is a reasonable timeframe
to enable producers to realise their investment and be able to
reinvest in alternative farming infrastructure," says Anderson. "If
this can be achieved, then the industry will have a much better
chance of being able to meet the increasing demand from shoppers,
which is seeing egg consumption increase by over 4% year on
"Ensuring there is a strong, growing egg industry in New
Zealand is important to Foodstuffs. It means we will be able to
give our customers surety around the quality and price of eggs into