Tesco has announced that it will stop sourcing eggs from caged hens by 2025. This comes after the retailer conducted a detailed review of its egg sourcing strategy, which included consultation with suppliers, industry experts and other key stakeholders.
The move is the latest initiative designed to ensure Tesco sources products in a sustainable way. Tesco recently launched its Fair For Farmers Guarantee for fresh milk which demonstrates how every own label pint of milk helps support British dairy farmers. Tesco has also introduced guaranteed high value contracts for British potato growers, and sustainable farming programmes for lamb farmers and producers of cheese.
Earlier this year the supermarket launched new fresh produce ranges, including a number of Farm Brands and its Perfectly Imperfect range, which allows Tesco to take more fresh produce from British growers – up to 95% of their crop. Tesco has also pledged to source more of the seafood it offers customers in a sustainable way, in partnership with the Marine Stewardship Council.
Working with supplier partners, Tesco will transition to 100% cage-free eggs, moving to alternative sourcing methods, such as barns, free range and organic.
At present, some 43% of the 1.4 billion eggs sold by Tesco each year come from caged eggs, also known as enriched colonies. Some 57% of eggs sold by Tesco in the UK come from Free Range or Organic methods.
Matt Simister, Tesco’s Commercial Director for Fresh Food said: “Our decision on caged hens is one of a number of Tesco initiatives designed to ensure sustainable sourcing, and improve animal welfare.
“We carried out an extensive and collaborative review with our suppliers and key industry experts to help us work through how best we can move to 100% cage-free eggs. This will ensure we give our supplier partners the certainty they require, to make the significant and necessary investments needed for the new farming systems.”
Veli Moluluo, Managing Director – Noble Foods Ltd, Tesco’s largest supplier of eggs, said: “We have already started investigating new methods of egg production, and the commitment from Tesco to move away from enriched colony production in a manageable timeframe gives us the confidence and ability to invest for the long term.”
During the transition from enriched colony production, Tesco and its supplier partners will continue to maintain established and stringent standards for all its egg producers. Tesco’s producers are required to meet high welfare specifications and must comply with the British Lion Code of Practice to ensure that all Tesco eggs have been sourced responsibly.
Did you know?
Tesco sells approximately 1.4 billion eggs per year in the UK.
Tesco continues to be the UK’s largest retailer of free range eggs with 57% of Eggs sold in the UK from Free Range or Organic methods.