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Change to Bird Flu Advisory Labels

bird flu advisory labels

Advice received yesterday (23rd March 2017) suggests the bird flu advisory labels found on hitherto free range eggs must be changed.

We received a call yesterday from Paul Radnor of the Animal & Plant Health Authority (APHA). We have built a good relationship with Paul over the labelling changes required from the current situation with respect to avian flu. He advised us that due to the time that the housing order has been in place, labelling would now have to indicate free range eggs as “Barn Eggs”.

As we have blogged previously, APHA and DEFRA have issues a housing order to improve bio-security in the national flock. This measure was taken to try and prevent the spread of avian flu in commercial flocks from wild birds by housing birds to keep them away from mixing with wild birds. This brought about the first stage of bird flu advisory labels stating: “Eggs laid by hens temporarily housed in barns for their welfare”.

The welfare of the national flock is paramount and housing the birds is the right thing to do. However, under EU regulations, birds that are not given free access to the outside (and under specific minimum standards) cannot be labelled “Free Range”. Despite the special circumstances, the EU has been unable to grant any special dispensation despite the circumstances.

It is debatable as to whether the UK government is being over-zealous in enforcing the EU rules (which other EU governments may not enforce as keenly).

The housing order means that birds have now been housed for an excess of 12 weeks which is the cut-off point to declare free range under the EU regulations.

Despite farmers wanting to rear their foul free range, the housing order is preventing them doing so. Many have had to incurr additional costs to caring for their flocks as a result of this order.

Bird Flu Advisory Labels

The new mandated bird flu advisory labels include the same wording as the original eggs but have a clear indicator specifying the eggs are now class 2 Barn eggs.

We have prepared new bird flu advisory labels and placed them into stock ready to order. As such we do not have a change over date after which the original bird flu advisory labels may not be used so suggest that egg producers use up their supplies for the time being.

If you require any advice, we recommend calling APHA or DEFRA or your local trading standards. To order, click here or call us on 01332 865933 or fill in the form below and we can contact you by return:

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Barn Eggs Labels for Free Range Flocks affected by Bird Flu

barn eggs labels - barn eggs laid by hens temporarily housed in bars for their welfare

Danro has now prepared temporary Barn Eggs Labels for Free Range Flock egg producers affected by the bird flu precautions implemented by DEFRA.

Under EU regulations, to label eggs as free range, they must be kept under specific minimum conditions including access to the outdoors with vegetation on a daily basis. Birds housed under the special measures introduced by DEFRA in December mean that after 12 weeks it is no longer lawful to label eggs as free range but must now have barn eggs labels indicated.

Whilst we have our own opinion on the intransigence of the EU Commission with respect to re-labelling free range flock’s eggs as ‘barn eggs’ rather than continuing with the explanation labels introduced at the beginning of February, producers must comply.

If you are unable to secure your flock from wild birds; i.e. netting their runs and disinfecting footwear etc. then you must continue to house your flock for the foreseeable future and accept that their eggs must be classed as barn eggs and can no longer be referred to as free range.

If you have been husbanding your flock as a free range flock, you cannot label the eggs as free range due to the housing restrictions conflicting with EU Regulations regarding egg labelling. Any eggs produced may continue to use the free range packaging and labelling you may have but must have an additional label added; in this case “Barn Eggs laid by hens temporarily housed in barns for their welfare”

You can buy these labels directly from us ex. stock by clicking here. You may also buy a TOWA Applicator which will help with bulk application of labels.

Please note: All information provided by Danro is provided as is and without warranty. Danro accept no responsibility for the accuracy of this information. Please see DEFRA’s website for exact guidance on the bird flu outbreak and your responsibilities.

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Free Range Egg Labelling for Bird Flu

Free Range Egg Labelling for Bird Flu - advisory labelling chage

You may need to amend your free range egg labelling for bird flu as DEFRA’s housing order is lengthened. In December the Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs (Defra) ordered that all free range hens – providing eggs or meat – be housed to protect against the threat of the H5N8 influenza virus. As a result, it may be necessary for your products to be re-labelled in accordance with EU regulations.

The British Egg Industry Council (BEIC) are understood to be negotiating a solution for egg producers to affix a secondary label to their packaging. This label is to reflect that their free range eggs will have their free range status downgraded to barn produced in light of the birds being housed inside for more than 12 weeks. The regulations are determined by EU regulations on free range declarations.

Danro has taken steps to prepare for the change and can supply you with labels from stock so you can change your free range egg labelling for bird flu. We will be printing labels this month (6th February 2017) with the approved wording for the change. As we understand, the Animal and Plant Health Agency (APHA) are confirming the approved wording for the labels and we will manufacture adequate stock to supply our customers.

The labels will be printed as 1-inch roundels in blue with white text. It is expected the text will be “Eggs laid by hens temporarily housed in barns for their welfare” and are priced at £3.90 per thousand. A minimum order of 10,000 labels is required and can be supplied with a TOWA applicator at £79.00. All prices are exclusive of VAT and Carriage.

You can buy labels here or the bundled pack of bird flu labels and applicator here.

If you require further information, call us on 01332 865933 or fill in the form below.