To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs, if she will estimate the loss of sales to free range egg producers since the imposition of avian influenza prevention zones.
Following the announcement on 24 February of a more targeted approach, most egg producers in England can now let their birds outside, provided they meet the additional biosecurity measures that we have put in place. Producers in the higher risk areas can market their eggs as free-range if they come from birds which meet all the other requirements for free-range and are allowed into fully-fenced areas which are fully covered by netting. A number of retailers have said that they remain committed to their free range egg producers and will continue to support them during this time. On this basis, we do not anticipate any significant disruption to sales. We will continue to monitor market developments in conjunction with the industry.