The plight of battery hens has received recognition internationally.
In the European Union, standard battery cages (which provide only 450 square centimeters of cage space per hen) were finally phased out from January 2012. Colony battery cages (which must provide 600 square centimeters of usable space per hen) are still allowed. In addition, eggs from caged birds must legally be labeled as such throughout the European Union.
Austria banned battery cages in 2009 and is set to ban ‘furnished’ (equivalent to New Zealand colony) cages by 2020. Belgium has also banned the battery cage and proposes to ban colony cages by 2024. Switzerland has already banned both the battery and furnished cage systems, through a ten-year phase-out of all battery farming which was achieved in 1992. In the US, California and Michigan have passed laws banning the caging of hens.
Overseas, there has been a huge momentum of people moving away from cage eggs and in response to this, many food retailers have pledged to go cage-free. This is just some of them:
Supermarkets and retailers
See the full list of companies that are going cage-free.
SAFE is in coalition with twenty-eight other animal groups across the globe in the Open Wing Alliance. Initiated by The Humane League, the Open Wing Alliance member organisations have joined forces to create a unified front in the campaign to free egg-laying hens from cages.
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