If you’re looking for eggs that come from a farm that takes hen welfare seriously, then you’ll want to look for the UEP Certified seal. United Egg Producers (UEP) has developed guidelines for optimal hen well-being – guidelines that are backed by decades of research and recommendations from an independent Scientific Advisory Committee. More than 90 percent of eggs produced in the U.S. come from farms like Hillandale Farms that voluntarily participate in UEP Certified, choosing to open their farms to independent auditors. When you buy eggs with the UEP Certified seal on the carton, you can be sure that they come from a farm that meets or exceeds all the requirements for certification.
Why Certification Matters
The UEP Certified program is a way for egg farmers to demonstrate their commitment to providing the best care possible for their hens. The guidelines cover everything from feed and water quality, to air quality and hen access to the outdoors (depending on the housing system). Farms are inspected by an independent auditor at least annually, ensuring that they meet or exceed the UEP Certified standards.
By buying eggs with the UEP Certified or UEP Certified Cage-Free seal, you can be sure that the hens laying those eggs have been raised in an environment that meets or exceeds strict guidelines for optimal hen welfare. That’s why certification matters – it ensures that egg farmers are taking animal care seriously and that their hens are being raised in an environment that is as close to their natural one as possible. So, the next time you’re shopping for eggs, look for the UEP Certified seal – and rest assured that your purchase is helping to support ethical egg production.
The Five Freedoms of Animal Welfare
The UEP Certified Program prioritizes the Five Freedoms of Animal Welfare to guarantee that hens have a good quality of life.
Freedom from Hunger and Thirst
This means that hens are provided with fresh water and the right amount of feed at all times.
Freedom from Discomfort Due to the Environment
This means that hens are housed in an environment suitable to their needs, where they can move around freely and have access to areas to rest or nest.
Freedom to Express Normal Behavior for the Species
This means that hens are provided with enough space to move and express natural behaviors such as dust bathing, perching, and scratching.
Freedom from Pain, Injury, or Disease
This means that hens are given access to proper veterinary care and protection against diseases or stress caused by other animals in the flock.
Freedom from Fear or Distress
This means that hens are provided with a stress-free environment, and should be handled in a humane manner at all times.
By adhering to the Five Freedoms of Animal Welfare, egg farmers can ensure that their hens are living in an environment where they can express natural behaviors, remain healthy and safe from disease or distress, and have access to clean food and water.
When you buy eggs with the UEP Certified or UEP Certified Cage-Free seal on the carton, you can be sure that they come from a farm that meets or exceeds all of these standards – so you can enjoy your eggs knowing that they were raised in an ethical environment.