Cockburn Gazette - - OPINION -

THE re­cent fuss over free range eggs is well war­ranted – how the eggs taste is not the point, rather the con­di­tions un­der which they are pro­duced.

Many con­sumers pre­fer pay­ing ex­tra for free range.

Peep be­hind the gos­samer cur­tain and you will see the cru­elty of bat­tery hens which ex­ist in in­tol­er­a­bly cramped and un­nat­u­ral con­di­tions.

Hens suf­fer ex­ces­sive feather loss and stress, they peck at each other and them­selves out of frus­tra­tion and bore­dom.

They are of­ten ema­ci­ated and suf­fer foot in­fec­tions due to stand­ing on a wire caged base, never see­ing the out­side world, not able to perch, wan­der or scratch about. This will be their en­tire life.

The for­tu­nate, gen­uine, free range hens get to fos­sick in soil, peck and search for grubs, worms and snails, along with greens.

They feel the fresh air and the warmth of the sun.

They spread their wings and run.

They come in at night to roost. A far health­ier life­style and diet pro­duces health­ier eggs.

Peo­ple who pay more for cru­elty-free, health­ier eggs, must be guar­an­teed that is what they are re­ceiv­ing.

There needs to be far more scru­tiny in this sec­tor.

Celebrity chef Jamie Oliver was re­spon­si­ble for sow-stall free pork in the UK. Aus­tralia will be fi­nally phas­ing out this cruel prac­tice by the years end.

There’s now a move in the UK to ban cage eggs. Hope­fully we will fol­low their ex­am­ple.

If the ma­jor­ity pur­chased free range only, pro­duc­ers of the caged va­ri­ety would have lit­tle choice.

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