4 2 mins 11 yrs

To put this in context, being vegan, I don’t eat eggs or anything with egg in it. So the yolks on you lot…

Egg prices are expected to soar 30pc by Easter because of the EU ban on battery hens. And the cost of other foodstuffs could also begin to rise as producers are forced to pass on the increases. Improved welfare for hens has resulted in a Europe-wide shortage of eggs which is forcing up prices, the Irish Egg Association has said.

Is it worth it? I have mixed views. On the one hand no one wants to see any creature kept in barbaric conditions but on the other hand who can afford a 30% price hike? At what point do animal rights trump human needs? Is this a step too far or will those who are on limited budgets decide that it is worth it to keep the hens happy?

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  1. When push comes to shove there are other foodstuffs. If eggs are now too expensive people won’t buy them, which will push down demand, which will push down the price. Eventually supply will increase as farms and factories acclimatise to the new regulations and price will return to a situation that most people can now afford.

  2. In many cases, this EU law reflects what has alreaady been either law or common practice in various EU countries law due to market demands. Several countries – including the UK, I think – have implemented the same rules a long time ago.
    There is a large price difference between eggs from free-range and cage hens; western European producers have generally switched to the upper-price market, while countries like Rumania and Poland, where there is much less public sensitivity, and laws, about animal suffering, have been supplying the low-price, cage-egg market.

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