DEFRA has launched its review of egg supply chain fairness, which was first announced in May this year.

The review will examine how the supply chain works and will seek the views of farmers, egg packers, processors, retailers and other stakeholders.

See also: Egg imports double in first 8 months of this year

Squeezed profitability in the egg sector has seen the national laying hen flock contract significantly over the past 18 months, with only a tentative recovery now underway.

The review will focus on understanding how the contractual arrangements within the sector currently function, and whether there is the need for further legislation to oversee the relationship between producers and buyers, the BEIC said.

The government first said it would review the supply chain at a Downing Street summit in May – similar reviews of the dairy and pork markets have already taken place.

Global challenges

Defra said the review followed “a series of global challenges experienced by the egg sector, including increased energy and feed costs, which have raised questions about the fairness of the supply chain”.

Defra secretary Thérèse Coffey said: “Producers should be paid a fair price for their high-quality produce, which is why we are committed to ensure there is fairness across food supply chains.

“At the Farm to Fork summit in May, the government pledged to support the farmers by undertaking a review into the egg sector to ensure fairness.

“I would now encourage all stakeholders from across the industry to take part in this review to ensure their voices are heard.”

Fairness

British Free Range Egg Producers Association (BFREPA) chief executive Robert Gooch said: “BFREPA has been calling for a review of egg supply agreements for producers for some time and welcomes this consultation on fairness in the egg supply chain.  

“The consultation on the workings of the egg supply chain is needed to provide further stability for the sector and to ensure that there is no repeat of egg shortages in the future.”

For more information on the consultation or to submit evidence, visit: Open consultation on contractual fairness and transparency in the UK egg industry.