RSPCA Australia has stepped up its call to ban the battery cage, with today’s launch of a prominent national billboard campaign.
Concerned about public awareness of the more than 11 million layer hens still suffering in battery cages in Australia, the RSPCA said a (so far) lacklustre response from the egg industry is what has led it to take action beyond the organisation’s more traditional methods of communication.
The campaign will consist of a dozen billboards in key locations across the country depicting the disturbing black and white image of hens in a barren battery cage with the caption: ‘Battery cages cause suffering.’
RSPCA Australia communications and campaigns lead Jane Speechley said the billboards are a key part of kick-starting the conversation with both the egg industry and the public.
“That battery cages cause suffering is the conclusion of an RSPCA scientific report on hen welfare,” she said.
“Earlier this year, we tried to meet with egg industry leaders to discuss a planned and achievable phase-out of battery cages—but they wouldn’t come to the table.
“We then released a report that brought together the wealth of scientific evidence proving that hens suffer in battery cages—and still, the egg industry is hanging onto battery cages.”
Speechley continued, “These billboards are stating the simple truth, that battery cages cause suffering, a truth that is firmly based in science. It’s our hope that bringing the issue to the public’s attention will inspire change.”
On average, Australians eat 17 million eggs a day. Although many consumers are making the choice to buy cage-free when shopping, the majority of eggs used in the retail and manufacturing industries still come from hens who live a life confined to a battery cage.
“The egg industry needs to understand that this issue won’t go away until the cages do,” said Speechley.
People who support an end to the battery cage can add their voice to the call for an industry-wide phase out by visiting here.