Breaking News: Trader Joe’s Going Cage-Free

By on February 13, 2016 with 5 Comments By Wayne Pacelle

Trader Joe’s—one of the nation’s largest grocers with nearly 500 locations—confirmed that it’s switching 100 percent of the eggs on its shelves to cage-free. Its locations in Arizona, California, Colorado, New Mexico, Oregon, and Washington will be exclusively cage-free by 2020 (about half its total stores) and all its locations nationally will be cage-free by 2025. The company has indicated that it may accelerate the timeline, and we surely hope it does.

This has been quite a bumpy journey with The HSUS and Trader Joe’s. Back in 2005, after Whole Foods Market became the first major grocer to go 100 percent cage-free for eggs in its supply chain, we waged a campaign calling on Trader Joe’s also to go cage-free, resulting in a compromise where the company committed to switch all its private label eggs to cage-free. According to the company, this resulted in store egg sales today being 62 percent cage-free—very far above the national average.

And we were especially critical of Trader Joe’s in 2015, when Proposition 2 took effect and the company decided not to align all of its sales of eggs with the standards called for in the landmark ballot measure. But we’re now pleased that Trader Joe’s has committing to join nearly 60 other major food companies in creating a timeline to get to the 100 percent mark.

With the egg industry shifting rapidly to cage-free and other companies that use both fewer and more eggs than Trader Joe’s having faster timelines, our hope is certainly that the company will work to stop supporting cage confinement of hens at all of its stores as quickly as possible.

We applaud our friends at Compassion in World Farming (CIWF) for being a major part of the effort, along with organizations like and the Albert Schweitzer Foundation, in helping convince Trader Joe’s to embrace a cage-free future.

Farm Animals

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  1. Kelly Perkins says:

    I only buy Vital Farms Alfresco Eggs. They are pasture raised – not just cage-free. I have researched them online, and believe they are the real deal. I pay $7.99 a carton for them, and wouldn’t have it any other way. I feel that itbis not too much to pay at least fifty cents an egg to be sure that the animals are getting the humane treatment they deserve.

    • Sally Palmer says:

      Wow–good message to everyone on being willing to pay for humane treatment. I am so glad about Trader Joe’s finally going to cage-free, and I admire the brilliant cage-free campaign strategy. It draws attention to the cruelty of factory farming with the easy-to-understand sound byte “cage free” as a rallying point for getting rid of the despair of cages and opening the door to natural, healthy behaviors and more humane treatment. But I also love hearing people saying if it costs more right now for even greater reduction in cruelty, we are willing to pay for it. With this kind of growth in consciousness through widespread education, in the next 10 years factory farming is going to change forever for the good of everyone.

    • Susan Dietrich Schneider says:

      Okay….but ever wonder where all the “pasture raised” roosters are???

    • Doris Muller says:

      Kelly, just curious, do you know where the hens are sourced from? And what happens to the hens when they are spent?

  2. Mook says:

    It’s still slavery…

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