Colony Cage Cruelty Exposed



Responsive image

You can help: Demand change for hens by asking Countdown to go cage-free.



New investigation exposes the shocking truth behind 'improved' colony cages

A new colony cage farm that supplies eggs to major supermarkets has been exposed in an undercover investigation that shows extensive cruelty to hens. Filmed by investigators from Farmwatch, the footage shows:

Responsive image

Hens trapped beneath perches and left to starve to death;

Responsive image

Dead hens left to rot alongside live hens;

Responsive image

Severely de-feathered hens living in overcrowded conditions.


Conditions on the farm were so bad that of four hens rescued, two later died from their injuries.

Public disapproval of caging hens led to a phase-out of standard battery cages by 2022. However – as this investigation shows – the replacement system is no better.  Hens are still suffering in cramped cages, and they can even become trapped and starve to death under the very equipment that was supposed to improve their lives.

SAFE believes the Government's lack of action on hen welfare means that supermarkets have also been slow to act.  One of New Zealand’s biggest supermarket chains – Countdown – is owned by Woolworths Australia who committed to stop selling cage eggs by 2025. However, Countdown continues to sell cage eggs and is only going cage-free in its own brand eggs by 2022, leaving all other brands to come from caged hens. Additionally, Countdown allows egg producers to con their customers by labelling eggs from caged hens as ‘colony-laid’ or ‘colony-eggs' – giving the impression that cages are indeed a thing of the past.”


VICTORY - you did it!

Countdown is to phase out cage eggs from all New Zealand stores.

Read more.




Responsive image