Currently in Australia there are no regulations set out for what can be classed as a free-range egg or a barn-laid egg and the South Australian government is proposing a voluntary code for egg labelling to rectify this.
This would mean in order to label eggs free-range they would have to come from an environment where a maximum of 1,500 hens per hectare, in areas with unrestricted roaming in daylight hours and sufficient shelter. There also would be a ban on induced moulting.
Free-range egg producers welcome the proposal as they believe it would put them more on a level playing field with larger producers that make the same claims of being free-range as them.
The SA Government is accepting submissions on its proposal until the middle of July.
Queensland is the only other state to have moved to a free-range standard of 1,500 hens per hectare.