British Lion Eggs is to strengthen its code of practice with a requirement that all eggs are stamped on-farm stating the production system.

At a recent meeting of Lion egg subscribers, members voted for a rule change which means that from the end of 2009, Lion-caged eggs will be marked with the producer code, which shows the system of production, country of origin and the farm where the eggs were laid.

A year later, it will also apply to Lion free-range, barn and organic eggs.

Mark Williams, chief executive of the British Egg Industry Council, said: “We are continually looking at ways in which we can improve the Code. Ensuring that Lion eggs are marked on farm will improve traceability still further.”

Several free-range and cage egg producers have already made the move to stamping eggs on-farm including The Lakes Free Range Egg Company and Oakland Farm Eggs.

However, the move has attracted some criticism from Scottish producer John Campbell, of Glenrath Farms. Speaking just days before the meeting, he said: “It is right that on-farm stamping should be introduced for cage systems to help prevent egg fraud. But introducing on-farm stamping for free-range producers is expensive and unnecessary because free-range eggs are not the problem when it comes to fraud.