(8 July/The Country)

In an email issued by Gilmores on Monday to its customers, there was a warning of an increase in egg prices as farmers try to meet changes in the law.  It stated that the industry lacked investment to comply with the Animal Welfare Code of Practice for layer hens and that due to higher production-related costs, colony eggs would be sold at a higher price as cage eggs are phased out. Changes to the Animal Welfare Code of Practice were first announced in December 2012 which required farmers to move their hens farmed in cages to large colony enclosures. Egg Producers Federation (EPF) reported 40 percent of the country’s hen cages were required to be upgraded due to the age of the cages last year. EPF estimates that it will cost egg farmers between $660,000 and $8.5million to meet requirements.