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The Consumer and the Egg
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The Consumer and the Egg

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  • 1. The Consumer and the Egg: Negotiating Eco-Labels Michele L. W. Knaus Leadership for Ecology, Culture and Learning Masters of Education, PSU, 6/14/08 Need a Job!
  • 2. Age Mostly 26-40 years old Education 90% well educated 25 or younger 26-40 41-60 61 or older High School College Post-Grad Professional Yearly Household Income Wide range of Incomes
  • 3. Consumer Identification with Issues vote with my food dollar 88% Politics food system issues 95% Politics environmental issues 98% Earth Friendly ethical treatment of animals 91% Animal Lovers local economy 96% $$ & Community food cost 79% $$ & Personal Budget food safety concerns 87% Don’t want to die 0 0.25 0.50 0.75 1.00 Percentage who agree with statement
  • 4. Have consumers done their research? Thought about where you get your eggs 95% Looked up information about eggs online 56% Visited your egg producer’s website 25% Visted your egg farm 21% Noticed if grocery store had information 24% 0 0.25 0.50 0.75 1.00
  • 5. Who Certifies the Ecolabels? Consumers thought they knew who certified cage free and free range eggs... but they were wrong. Thought they were right, 63% got it wrong. Only 21% actually got it right Had no idea. 16% At least they knew they didn’t know... no idea got it wrong
  • 6. Why care about eggs? Buying Local ✴ Reduces Food Miles ✴ Supports Local Community & Farmers
  • 7. Why care about eggs? Environmental Issues ✴ Factory Farms pollute land, water, and air quality ✴ Effects felt by laborers and local community
  • 8. Ethics of Eating Chickens get 67 square inches of cage space for their lifetime
  • 9. Ecolabel: Cage Free • No small cages • Chickens live their lives in warehouses • No monitoring by any agencies or 3rd parties • Use of term at whim of marketing department
  • 10. Ecolabel: Free Range • No small cages •Amount of access to • Chickens live their lives in outdoors is not warehouses regulated or standard • No monitoring by any agencies or 3rd parties • Use of term at whim of marketing department
  • 11. Certified Organic • All the benefits of cage free and free range eggs, plus chickens are fed (expensive) organic, vegetarian feed • Third party audited
  • 12. Certified Humane Raised and Handled • High Standards for chickens’ welfare: many regulations regarding natural behavior and stocking density • Third party audited • No Molting by Starvation
  • 13. What the Terms Mean Ethical Treatment Beak Cutting Molting by Starvation - searing off of the tip of - starvation for 2 weeks the beak to prevent of laying hens to induce chicken attacks among another few weeks of crowded flock laying before chicken is terminated 60% of survey participants thought no label allowed this, but the 63% of survey participants thought industry truth is that they ALL NO label permitted this, but in allow this truth, the only one that doesn’t is Certified Humane Raised and Handled.
  • 14. Vegetarian Fed: makes sure that the laying hens aren’t fed some really nasty stuff Make a note: certified organic eggs already guarantees vegetarian, antibiotic-free feed, you don’t have to look for this label on your egg carton if you buy organic
  • 15. Ridiculous Labels No Hormones it is unlawful to feed laying hens hormones, so ALL eggs are hormone-free Natural WTF? 100% Pure
  • 16. Best Buy: Pastured Eggs Farmers’ Markets, Farm Stands CSAs Chicken Co-ops (Zenger Farm) Buyers’ Clubs (Abundant Life Farm, Afton Field Farm) Raise your own at home!
  • 17. Do You Know Where Your Food Comes From? Vote with your Food Dollar For the Food System YOU Want

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