A new study funded in part by United Egg Producers and the United Egg Association shows the transition to cage-free eggs will increase costs and reduce profits.  It also shows that producers may not be able to make the 2026 deadline.


“Conversion from conventional to cage-free housing is costly for both egg producers and final consumers," the study noted.


There remains a lot of uncertainty about the extent to which egg producers will be willing and able to continue transitioning to cage-free housing at a rate commensurate with retailers’ cage-free pledges.  Roughly 55% of consumers surveyed for the study are motivated by price and don’t discriminate between cage and cage-free eggs.  Producers surveyed also reveal higher costs and labor requirements associated with cage-free production.


Producers are also experiencing challenges in getting financing to convert or build cage-free facilities without longer-term commitments from retailers, particularly as interest rates continue climbing higher. 


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