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BuzzFeed feedback on cage-free eggs a must-read

A carton of cage-free eggs
Photo by Andrea Gantz

News article gets message out about oversupply of cage-free eggs but comments also reveal how little some consumers know

June 19, 2017

When I saw the BuzzFeed headline “America is flooded with cage-free eggs, but people aren’t buying them,” I was happy to see that message being spread.

It was nice to see that other media outlets were catching wind of what those in the egg industry already knew: The supposed consumer demand for cage-free eggs just isn’t what it was made out to be.

BuzzFeed News Reporter Venessa Wong had apparently been listening to Cal-Maine Foods CEO Dolph Baker during the Stephens Spring Investment Conference, in which Baker, who heads the world’s largest egg company, said: “Right now, there is a much greater demand for commodity eggs at these low prices than there is for cage-free eggs.”

While I read Wong’s report with interest, it was the reader comment section that really grabbed my attention. While a few comments were thoughtful and lucid, there were also those comments that just showed how little some people really know about the egg industry and food labels in general.

I would highly recommend you read the report and the related comments. In the meantime, I’ll highlight a few of the more notable comments.

Pasteur, pasture not the same thing

The most surprising comment in the section was when one reader wrote: “You have to buy pasteurized eggs if you want eggs from chicken that are just out kickin (sic) on the farm.”

Luckily, another reader who was apparently familiar with French scientist Louis Pasteur was able to jump in and explain that the two terms were totally unrelated.

A little comedy

It’s always good when that person who was the class clown makes an appearance on online forums. One person said “I don’t want my eggs roaming all around the house,” in response to those promoting “free-range eggs.”

Then, there was the woman who said she got her eggs from a friend that has rescue chickens. One wise guy chimed in and asked if she meant they were from chickens rescued from fighting rings. Adding an LOL, she said they were rescued from a “very prominent underground chicken fight club,” before stating what she really meant. Both then went on to say that people need more of a sense of humor and not get so angry over things.

Poverty shamer makes appearance

Central to the issue here is the simple fact that many people cannot afford to pay the higher price for cage-free eggs.

But one person who identified herself as a promotional advertising specialist at U.S. Cellular, shared her two cents about the health of cage-raised hens, then said “If you can’t afford to buy ethical eggs, don’t buy eggs.”

She was quickly called out for her elitist attitude by another reader, who also gave well wishes to others who said they could not afford cage-free eggs

While many of the comments were humorous, there is still a serious message here, and that is the public doesn't understand the egg industry and many people just draw their own conclusions about animal welfare, healthy eating and so many other topics related to the cage-free egg movement.

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