Irish Parliament member and Minister of Agriculture and Rural Development, Michelle Gildernew, met with Irish egg producers, say reports. The meeting’s purpose was to talk through the challenges facing the industry given the coming EU ban on conventional hen cages.

The ban was announced in 1999 and will be enforced beginning in 2012.

Gildernew encouraged egg producers to meet with their bankers regarding the transitional costs, and said her office would continue to support the industry through the Processing and Marketing Grant Scheme. She also pledged to write to the EU Commission asking for a new marketing code to differentiate between eggs from hens in enriched systems and those in conventional cages.