The Iowa Poultry Association held their Fall Festival this week. The buzz going around was centered mostly around eggs. There is talk of transitioning to “cage-free” production. But if you think it is simply a matter of opening a door, you would be wrong.
Audio: Profit Matters 9-21-18
Going cage-free will be a giant and expensive undertaking for egg producers. Producers are just talking about taking the first steps. There are many questions to ask and problems to solve before a successful program can be implemented, as JT Dean, the President of the Iowa Poultry Association, explains.
The biggest question to be asked as producers start this journey is going to be, “What is the definition of ‘cage-free’ going to be?” This is the question that will determine what kind of capital investments must be made.
How to make changes is something which is already being researched. Dr. Hongwei Xin of Iowa State talks about what they are looking at.
Dr. Xin agrees the definition of just what cage-free will mean, is the top priority. Different retailers have different standards when they want to purchase only cage-free eggs.
We will continue to talk about the concerns and questions being asked about going cage-free over the next few days on the Iowa Agribusiness Radio Network. It seems trying to come up with a totally new practice is a bit like running around like a chicken with its… well you know the rest.