The Union for the Belgian Egg Products Industry has said that egg processors are finding it difficult to survive since the implementation of the EU's new welfare regulations for laying hens at the beginning of the year.
The union says that the regulations have meant that many producers have ceased production or are trying to adapt to the new rules. Cold weather has resulted in increased demand for eggs, further compounding the problem.
The combination of these factors has resulted in a situation where egg producers cannot satisfy demand and processors are having difficulties in supplying the contracted quantities as they cannot source enough eggs, according to the union. The scarcity of eggs has resulted in a rapid increase in prices, making the situation financially unbearable for processors.
Additionally, there are reports that cake producers in France are warning that they may go out of business due an inability to source sufficient supplies, while in the UK consumers are being warned that the price of eggs is due to rise sharply.