Egg industry looks to unscramble opinions
Farmers will try to unscramble what Australians think of the egg industry in a new study designed to whisk producers towards practices in keeping with public expectations.
Industry body Australian Eggs has teamed up with the CSIRO to poach the views of more than 5000 randomly selected people, with the general public also encouraged to get involved of their own accord.
Australian Eggs managing director Rowan McMonnies is prepared for the research to have a crack at some aspects of the industry, conceding trust has reached a low point.
"Animal welfare and environmental issues are very significant, that's the feedback we hear," Mr McMonnies told AAP.
He said the phrase "community expectations" was becoming a cliche in agriculture and the study was the egg industry's path to addressing the public's concerns.
"People talk about community expectations but there's no actual mechanism to track what they actually are," Mr McMonnies said.
"This will empower the industry."
The average Australian ate 231 eggs last year but farmers have often felt the weight of consumer expectations in welfare debates, like free range versus caged chickens.
Mr McMonnies said debate was a specific concern but he hoped the study would give producers a wide range of data to act on.
Until August 31, Australians can visit the CSIRO website to get involved in the study.
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