When egg sellers in New South Wales can claim 20,000 chickens per hectare is ‘free range’, then free range becomes a questionable term.
CHOICE has lodged a super-complaint with the Department of Fair Trading on free-range egg claims in New South Wales, asking for an investigation to see whether consumers are being misled.
Ten thousand hens a hectare is the basis for Coles Homebrand Free Range category. Woolworths is looking to phase out caged eggs by 2018 but more to the point, will they simply work under the regulations developed? That is, allowing an unreasonable number of chickens per hectare. Others also it seems http://www.choice.com.au/shonkyaward/shonky-award-ecoeggs.aspx
Most of us want the assurance that our eggs come from cruelty free producers who operate in a sustainable manner.
Our free range eggs come from Dora Creek, a hamlet on the shores of Lake Macquarie,
just north of Morisset. Dora Creek is home to 500 people and a few thousand free range chooks who lay fresh, chemical-free, antibiotic-free eggs for the Fresh Start brand.
Roaming in a predator-free environment is good for a stress-free life. Chickens do better when they can grub, adding worms and vegetation to their diet.
Their eggs are better too. At Dora Creek there are no more than 1500 chickens a hectare. This is sustainable chicken farming.
They have green pastures: they’re lush – and an excellent place to relax. As Anton refers to it: a Chook Med holiday park for free ranging chickens.