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Advice for retailers on specifying and handling eggs
Around 18 million Lion marked eggs are purchased from supermarkets every day, which is why the Lion mark has become one of the most recognised indicators of food quality in the UK, with more than 80% of consumers recognising it as a symbol of safe British food.
All major retailers stock British Lion eggs, which are produced to a wide-reaching Code of Practice. The Code of Practice covers the entire supply chain from breeding stock, right through to delivery to the supermarket or distribution depot.
The Code also makes recommendations for the handling and sale of eggs within retail outlets. In order to maintain eggs in optimum condition, the Lion Code of Practice recommends that eggs:
- Are stored at an even temperature and below 20℃ in their outer boxes or packs.
- Are stored in a dry place away from strong smelling foods and possible contaminants.
- Are not stored or displayed:
- Near to heat sources such as fridge motors and fan heaters.
- In shop windows or direct sunlight.
- Are kept away from pre-cooked or raw foods.
- Are sold in strict rotation (first in, first out), with display cabinets ideally cleared completely twice a week.
- Are handled in a way to minimise damage.
If the eggs come from hens kept in enriched colony cages, the printing on the outer and pre-packs must reflect this by describing the eggs appropriately.
For Lion egg packs, all 6, 9 and 10 egg pre-packs containing enriched cage eggs must carry the words ‘Eggs from caged hens’, displayed in Arial with a minimum 10 point font size. On a 12 egg pack, or larger, the words ‘Eggs from caged hens’ must be displayed in Arial, with a minimum 12 point font size.
Descriptors on packs of Lion enriched cage eggs must also meet the Lion Code both literally and contextually. For example, there can be no use of terms such as ‘Fresh from the farm’, ‘Country eggs’ or any other words or images that could be construed as misleading to the consumer. This means that they cannot be described as ‘Farm Eggs’, or depict certain scenes, including free-roaming birds or countryside imagery.