Years of Animal Activism Sheds Light on Importance of Cage Free Eggs
Demand for cage free eggs is growing rapidly across the globe as through the years animal right activists have raised concerns about animal cruelty and human intervention in natural nesting activities. In the current commercial processes, laying hens are housed in cages, irrespective of battery or “enriched” models. These systems physically confine birds and restrict their basic natural behaviour, which leads to their poor psychological health and creates higher chances of spreading diseases or illness amongst them.
On the other hand, a well-designed cage free housing allows hens to have a natural and healthy life, which has a direct impact on the quality of eggs. A significant number of animal welfare organizations have generated awareness regarding this brutal farming practice associated with caged hens.
In 2020, an international animal welfare organization, World Animal Protection, launched a pledge urging consumers to end the suffering of caged hens. Similarly, ISPCA along with Eurogroup for Animals and Compassion in World Farming organized the “End the Cage Age” exhibition in Dublin 2019, highlighting the issues of laying hens. Currently, the campaign is being supported by nearly 700,000 EU citizens. Increasing awareness towards animal welfare has led to a preference for environment-friendly and cruelty-free products, which is expected to drive the global demand for cage free eggs between 2021 and 2025.
Commitment of Multinational Companies Use 100% Cage Free Eggs Spells Bright Future
Various multinational companies, restaurants, and retail chains have declared the use of cage free eggs with many of them setting 2025 as a target year to become 100% cage free eggs users. Some of the major brand and companies are McDonald’s, Nestlé, Subway, Walmart, Burger King, Unilever, Grupo Bimbo, and Compass Group are contributing to the movement.
In March 2021, Nestlé announced that it met the pledge made in 2017 of getting 100% cage free in Europe. The company is now using only cage free eggs in all its food products offered in the European region. Annually, the company uses approximately 4,500 tons of eggs in Europe for its food brands including mayonnaise from Thomy and Winiary and some through the product offered under the Garden Gourmet portfolio. Similarly, McDonald’s has achieved cage free status on both shell eggs and egg product/ingredients in four European countries including UK, France, Germany, and the Netherlands. Increased demand of cage free eggs from manufacturers, restaurants, and retail chains is expected to fuel the market growth over the forecast period.
Brown and Large-sized Cage Free Eggs to Reflect Favorable Growth
The global cage free eggs market is segmented on the basis of size, color, and region. Based on size, the market is segmented as medium, large, extra-large, and jumbo. According to Fairfield Market Research, large sized-eggs are expected to hold a sizeable share in the global market. Large size eggs are preferred by end consumers, which is expected to drive the segment growth over the forecast period.
By color, the market is segmented into brown and white. The brown health movement adopted by the consumers across the globe is expected to give the segment an impetus. Preference for brown sugar, brown bread and now the brown eggs is to gain traction for the segment over the forecast period.
“Cruelty Free” Movement to Create Demand in Across Various Regions
Globally, Europe and North America are collectively expected hold the largest share on the pie. In North America, the U.S. is expected to hold high potential cage free eggs. The country is one of the largest eggs consumer across the globe. As of 2020, the table egg production was 96.9 billion in the country. Per capita consumption of eggs has attained a steady growth, increasing to 15% in the past 20 years. Growing number of companies reporting their transition to cage free eggs in country and consumer concern towards the consumption of cruelty free products are expected to drive the market growth in the country.
Asia Pacific is also expected to reflect significant potential growth over the forecast period with China leading the way. In China, numerous leading players such as Starbucks, Danone, Nestle, General Mills, and Unilever have begun moving to100% cage free eggs. A commitment to establish a better food quality and to construct a strong social influence in the country are expected to escalate market growth by 2025.
Global Cage Free Eggs Market: Key Players
Some of the major players studied in the global cage free eggs market report are Eggland’s Best LLC, Herbruck’s Poultry Ranch, Inc, Versova (Trillium Farm Holdings, LLC), Hickman’S Family Farms, Sunny Queen Farms Pty Ltd., Hillandale Farms, Cal Maine Foods, Inc., Rose Acre Farms Inc, Rembrandt Enterprises, and Granja Agas S.A.