Which hen laid the egg?

Which hen laid the egg?

About the origin of eggs according to different types of farming (link to egg identification):



Organic farming is very similar to free-range farming, but it is governed by a set of specifications that require the use of breeds of hens defined as hardy, preferably indigenous, i.e. from a given region or a native species that has evolved in that territory and that come exclusively from organic farms. The population density must not exceed 6 animals per m2 in the house (max. 3000 hens/house) and they must have access to an outdoor area (4m2 per head) for at least 1/3 of their life. Outdoor areas can include shaded areas and patches of vegetation for shelter against predators. Very important, feed must use only organic raw materials.


“FREE-RANGE EGGS (code 1)”

In free range, hens are provided with shelter from the weather, feeders, watering troughs and an open space to scratch around in. The space requirements are similar to organic farming but organic feed is not required.


“FREE-RANGE EGGS (code 2)”

In free-range, hens live free range in sheds on different levels (1 to 4) with one nest for every 7 animals with feeders and drinking troughs. In the single-storey sheds, which are the most common, two-thirds of the floor area is paved with wood shavings and one-third with a sloping slatted floor under which the droppings pit is placed; the density is a maximum of 9 birds per m2. Those equipped with aviaries, on the other hand, have several levels of slatted floor. Even in aviaries, the maximum density remains at 9 animals per m2 but, thanks to the various levels of slatted floors, the available area and therefore the number of reared animals increases.



In conventional cage rearing, hens were housed in metal structures, called cages, 40 cm high and 550 cm2 of slightly sloping flat surface, served by feeders (10 cm available per head) and automatically refilled drinking troughs. The cages were stacked in 4-5 levels and each contained 5 animals with a population density of 22 animals per square metre. EC Directive 99/74 banned this system and as of 5 October 2003 all new breeding installations must equip modified or enriched cages with a surface area of 750 cm2, a height of at least 45 cm, perches with at least 15 cm available per head, 12 cm of feed trough available per chicken, at least 2 drinking troughs and one nest per cage, a litter box for scratching and claw eating devices. Cages must be separated by aisles at least 90 cm wide and any kind of mutilation is forbidden except beak reduction (link to beak reduction article) in crowded cages to prevent cannibalism.


The editorial staff of MAC