19 May 2000

Free-range fair play

FREE-RANGE egg producers are embracing the industrys new producer organisation to help them achieve better prices .

Only British Free-Range Egg Producers Association members can join the marketing scheme, called BFREM, which has attracted about 75% of producers since its launch in February this year.

But BFREMs director, Peter Chignall, said the group was not planning to take on marketeers or packers head to head. "Our aim is to negotiate a fairer share of profits involved with free-range eggs." He believed that free-range producers were currently at the thinnest edge of the profit wedge.

"Packers argue that the market is over-supplied, but our view is that the free-range sector is propping up huge losses they are absorbing on cage eggs."

BFREM has also produced a new logo to help distinguish free-range from other eggs. But because it is aware that the market place is logo-congested, it is unsure how it will be used. &#42