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Battery cages or hen barns? Part 1: the influence of market performance and variable costs on economic results in egg production


, : Battery cages or hen barns? Part 1: the influence of market performance and variable costs on economic results in egg production. Neue Landwirtschaft ( 3): 73-77

Germany, after France, is the second largest egg producer in the EU with 16% of EU production. Gross margins are compared for flocks of from 100 to 100 000 in batteries, barns and free range conditions with organic or traditional methods. Allowing for price fluctuations, gross margins per hen per year vary between DM 7.36 and DM 50.25. Variable costs are from DM 29 to DM 47 per hen, or 11-22 pfennige per egg so that they are not even covered by producer prices below 12 pfennige.

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