UK’s first carbon neutral eggs go on sale

Respectful eggs, the UK’s first carbon neutral eggs, are to go on sale in Sainsbury’s stores this week.

Respectful eggs has adopted a number of practices and policies that embrace the natural environment rather than placing a strain on it. Critically there is no soya used in the feed, which is the single biggest contributor of carbon in the production of eggs. Soya is also a key factor in deforestation of the Amazon basin in South America, and while the Respectful egg minimises carbon emissions as much as possible, the company is supporting independently verified and monitored carbon off set projects focused on forest protection in South America.

Soya has been replaced with field beans which are grown on the Respectful farms, and milled on-site, thereby reducing the food miles required to feed the hens. The field beans and crops are direct drilled, meaning soils are not ploughed. As well as meaning fewer tractor movements, reducing fuel use, this vastly reduces soil compaction and allows for sub-terranean microbes to thrive, as opposed to being exposed to UV light – all beneficial for soil health.

The eggs, which are white, are laid by white hens which are reared and raised on the Respectful farms; free to graze on open pastures and feed on GM free crops. The breed of hen is significantly more productive than standard brown hens, live 40% longer, and consume less feed, all contributing to a lower environmental impact, according to the company.

Both the farm and the packing centre use renewable energy from Respectful’s own solar array, as well as procured wind energy, further contributing to the reduction of CO2e emissions.

Climate Partner, the leading solutions provider for corporate climate action, has independently verified the carbon footprint of the Respectful egg, monitoring its journey and impact from its beginnings on the farm all the way through to Sainsbury’s stores.

Lewis Mercieca, Respectful’s commercial manager, commented: “The Respectful egg reflects our passion for sustainable farming and the environment, our love for our hens, and our commitment to decarbonisation. We want customers to trust in our food, to trust in our eggs; and know that when they are purchasing a Respectful egg, that we have not only endeavoured to place the lightest footprint possible in delivering them a natural and delicious egg, but that every day we are trying to tread lighter still.”

Respectful Eggs will retail in selected Sainsbury’s stores priced from £1.99 for 6 eggs.

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