Signs at the egg section in Victoria’s Save-On Foods describe conditions the hens are kept in. (Keili Bartlett/News staff)

Egg buyers given more information, options in Greater Victoria stores

Partnership with BC SPCA launched the project in 2011

When buying eggs at Save-On-Foods, the age-old question “Which came first, the chicken or the egg?” comes to mind.

Below their cartons of eggs, signs describe the conditions the hens who made the eggs above are kept in. A green sign reads “Cage-free Organic: hens roam organic pasture, vegetarian feed.” Yellow shows “Cage-free free-range: hens roam indoors and outdoors,” while an orange label declares “Cage-free free-run: hens roam indoors only.” The red sign says “Cage eggs: hens in cages, behaviours restricted.”

The signs have been in place since 2011, when Save-On-Foods partnered with BC SPCA to bring awareness to animal treatment. After a two-year pilot project in several Vancouver stores, the project was expanded to the majority of Save-On-Foods stores in 2013.

READ MORE: Save-On-Foods shares with food banks for three-day campaign

“The thinking was could we test the notion that if we put signs in stores giving consumers better additional information on how it is their eggs came to be in this grocery store, would that change consumers’ decision making around what eggs they’re purchasing,” said Julie Dickson, Save-On-Foods’s director of public affairs.

BC SPCA had approached Save-On-Foods with the idea, and the company agreed because it would give their customers more information about what they are buying.

Since then, they’ve found that the signs do change human behaviour, but to what extent depends on store locations.

“There would be all kinds of reasons why, but in some cases, it seems to resonate better with customers and we have a higher percentage of purchase behaviours where they’re purchasing eggs that are cage-free,” Dickson said.

While she couldn’t say how the program affects purchasing across Save-On-Foods stores, in Victoria’s Blanshard location, the customers are purchasing “by percentage” more eggs labelled “cage-free”.

READ MORE: Mustard Seed celebrates ribbon-cutting on re-envisioned food bank


@KeiliBartlett
keili.bartlett@blackpress.ca

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter

Just Posted

Green Party leader Elizabeth May talks eliminating fish farming in open ocean pens

May stops in Qualicum Beach as part of Island campaign

To burn or not to burn?

Vancouver Island authorities take a patchwork approach to wrestling with the issue of woodsmoke

Cruise ships leading culprits in rising greenhouse gas emissions at Ogden Point: report

The GVHA released its Emissions Inventory Report just days after City asks for restrictions

Guardians leaving parks on Vancouver Island’s south coast for good

Juan de Fuca Park Watch folds due, in part, to people not carrying cash any more

Vancouver Island’s West Coast going wild about cycling

Ongoing project will tie Tofino and Ucluelet together with a paved cycling trail

Scheer, Trudeau, Singh haggle over potential minority government outcome

If you believe the polls, it appears the Liberals and Conservatives are neck-and-neck

Canucks beat Stanley Cup champs 4-3 in a shootout

Leivo nets winner, Vancouver dumps St. Louis for fourth straight win

STRIKE: WFP and USW are back at the table for mediation

“No further updates until either an agreement is reached or one party or the other breaks off talks”

Scooter rider suffers life-threatening injuries in crash in Nanaimo

One person airlifted to hospital in Victoria after collision on Wall Street on Thursday

‘The more you test, the more you find’: Beef recalls a sign of success, experts say

Despite appearances, experts say a recent rise in major recalls is not a sign of food supply problems

With $4M investment, Camosun College offers first sonography program on Vancouver Island

Starting in May 2020 students from Vancouver Island can pursue a career in sonography

RCMP members search shore along Stories Beach near Campbell River

Ground search not thought to be related to Oct. 16 homicide: RCMP

Pole-climbing thieves pilfering wire in Parksville Qualicum Beach area

Repairs are costly and thefts jeopardize public safety

Woman charged with numerous drug offenses stemming from a raid earlier this year at Island property

Police make arrest on an outstanding warrant dating back to January

Most Read