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This Is the Difference Between Cage-Free and Pasture-Raised Eggs

Two eggs sit beside a full carton.
New Africa/Shutterstock.com

If you want to buy more ethically-sourced food in 2022, you’ll need to understand the labels on the package. Sometimes, that can get confusing, particularly when it comes to eggs.

So what’s the difference between cage-free and pasture-raised eggs? Yes, there is one.

When you’re shopping, you’ve likely seen pasture-raised eggs at your local grocery store. Typically, when people read that phrase, it’s believed to mean that the chickens from which the eggs come are, well, cage-free. That’s true, but the label doesn’t guarantee that they weren’t placed into a packed barn with little to no roaming room or access to the outside. If you’re looking to buy humane products, that’s probably not what you want.

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What you do want, though, are pasture-raised eggs and specifically ones that include a Humane Farm Animal Care Certified Humane label.

The HFAC label has specific parameters around it and ensures that what you’re purchasing comes from humanely treated animals. In the case of eggs, it ensures that there are no more than 1,000 birds per 2.5 acres, and the fields are rotated. The chickens have to be kept outdoors with a housing option where they can go at night or during inclement weather.

The next time you head to the store planning to get some eggs for your next brunch, be sure to grab a carton of HFAC-certified pasture-raised ones.

[Via Life Hacker]

Shea Simmons Shea Simmons
Shea Simmons is an Atlanta-based writer who has written about everything from whether Crisco is a good moisturizer to how to KonMari your space. Her work has appeared in Bustle, My First Apartment, and Make It Grateful. Read Full Bio »

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