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Reimer, Jule

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Deutschlandfunk - Germany | 26/02/2013

Organic egg scandal destroys trust in farmers

Roughly 150 German producers have reportedly sold eggs as organic or free-range eggs, even though their chickens were not kept or fed accordingly. This is a blow to the image of German farmers, who aimed to keep foreign suppliers at bay with claims of a better animal welfare policy, the public radio broadcaster Deutschlandfunk criticises: "At the start of 2012, the German egg producers complained bitterly about unfair competition from European neighbours, who keep their hens closely packed together like in the old days of cruel mass egg production. Back then a good few consumers made the decision to strengthen local production by buying free-range eggs, and felt they were doing something for animal welfare in the process. After scandals over excessive use of antibiotics in poultry farms and horsemeat in Bolognese sauce, distrust of agricultural products and the food industry is once more on the rise. And the gnawing question remains: ... What form of agricultural production really deserves to be supported - whether it's by consumers or by billions in subsidies from Brussels?"

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