Five major companies have joined the movement to sell or source only cage-free eggs.
Target, ConAgra Foods, Campbells, Mondelēz Inernational and Norwegian Cruise Line have all announced plans to phase out eggs from caged hens. They join three other companies – Denny’s, Quiznos and Wendy’s – who earlier in 2016 have agreed to switch to cage-free eggs.
The Target Corporate Responsibility web page contains an announcement that the company intends to work with suppliers to increase its offerings of cage-free shell eggs throughout the United States. Target revealed a goal of having its entire assortment of shell eggs coming from cage-free hens by 2025, based on available supply.
The company also announced its plans via Twitter on January 19.
With the announcement, Target becomes the second major business in the grocery/retail sector to recently pledge a move to cage-free eggs. Costco Wholesale Corporation made a similar announcement several weeks ago, but did not provide a timeline concerning when the transition would be completed.
Target, headquartered in Minneapolis, Minnesota, has 1,805 stores and also serves customers from an online store.
ConAgra Foods announced on January 18 that it would work toward a supply of 100 percent cage-free eggs in its U.S. operations by 2025.
ConAgra Foods is the parent company of well-known brands Egg Beaters, Banquet, Chef Boyardee, Hunt’s, Marie Callender’s, Peter Pan, Reddi-wip and Snack Pack.
“This decision is part of ConAgra’s ongoing commitment to the humane and safe treatment of animals,” said
Known mostly for its line of soups, Campbell's intends to make the transition to cage-free eggs by 2025.
The company stated it is working with its suppliers in the transition, and in the meantime, it will “favor suppliers that supply eggs in a timely and cost-effective manner from a cage-free environment, in addition to those suppliers that can provide audit and tracking reports for sourcing cage-free eggs.”
Mondelēz International, a global snack food company, announced on January 15 that it would fully transition to using cage-free eggs in the United States and Canada by 2020 and in Europe by 2025.
"With the ambition of being the global leader in well-being snacks, we're making great strides in ensuring sustainable and responsible production of our products and sourcing of our ingredients," Jonathan Horrell, Mondelēz International director of sustainability, stated in a press release. "Meaningful commitments such as these take time, in both planning and implementation, but we're very pleased to announce this major step forward in our cage-free sourcing.
"We ultimately want all eggs to be produced cage-free, and we'll continue to advance conversations with suppliers to establish timelines for cage-free production in other regions, when we have evidence that commercially viable supplies are available.”
Mondelēzcurrently uses 100 percent cage-free eggs in all of its European chocolate brands as well as in its biscuit products sold in Belgium and the Netherlands.
Mondelēz brands include Nabisco, Oreo and Cadbury.
Norwegian Cruise Line
Norwegian Cruise Line has become the third cruise company to commit to a cage-free egg supply. It follows Carnival and Royal Caribbean, both of which in 2015 pledged to transition to cage-free eggs.
Norwegian Cruise Line stated it intends to make the transition by 2025.
“We believe that this change is the appropriate decision for our company as well as of our constituents,” the company stated.
An infographic about companies pledging to use cage-free eggs during the final six months of 2015 can be seen on WATTAgNet.