Barn Eggs, Free-Range Eggs or Organic Eggs: What You Should Know When Buying

You can buy barn or free-range eggs. There are also organic eggs. Here we explain what you need to know about these designations with regard to keeping the hens.

Barn eggs – are not as good as it sounds

The term barn eggs in no way means that the laying hens really move on the ground.

  • The animals are kept in so-called aviaries, which are stacked on top of each other. The laying hens move on gratings.
  • 18 chickens live in it per square meter without an outlet. To prevent the animals from injuring each other, the beaks used to be shortened. However, this is now prohibited by law.
  • Since diseases spread quickly in such a small space, antibiotics are used in large quantities.
  • You can tell whether eggs come from barn farming by the code on the eggs. In floor housing, the first number of the code is a two.

Free range with a run for the hens

Free range is far better for the animals than a barn.

  • With this type of husbandry, however, the laying hens do not have the free range all day. They are kept in large stables. Nine chickens share one square meter there.
  • The laying hens have more space during the day. Then each animal has an additional four square meters of a free run.
  • However, antibiotics are also used here. You can identify free-range eggs by the 1 as the first number in the egg code.

Organic eggs from happy hens

If you buy organic eggs, they can be identified by the 0 as the first number in the egg code.

  • Organic eggs are subject to strict rules. The chickens must be kept in open stalls with a run, appropriate to the species.
  • In addition, each laying hen must have 18 centimeters of space on a perch. A maximum of six laying hens may be kept per square meter of barn.
  • There is also a big difference from the other types of husbandry with regard to the feed. This must come from organic farming. Genetic engineering is prohibited.
  • Antibiotics are not used either. Sick animals are treated with natural remedies.

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