Waitrose becomes first UK grocer to sell eggs from ‘teenage’ hens

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Waitrose ready meals
// Waitrose to sell pullet eggs from hens that usually go to waste
// Pullet eggs are considered a favourite with chefs and will retail at £1.99 for four
// Waitrose is the first supermarket in the UK to retail the miniature eggs

Billed as a way of reducing waste for farmers, Waitrose has become the first UK supermarket to start selling pullet eggs from so-called ‘teenage’ hens.

Pullets, otherwise known as hens that are less than a year old, begin laying eggs at around 16 weeks, but their first eggs are considerably smaller than an ordinary hen’s egg.

Until now, supermarkets have refused to accept pullet eggs, despite the fact they can make up 10 per cent of an egg farmer’s overall stock.

Unable to be sold to supermarkets, most pullet eggs are thrown away, with up to 1.5 million pullet eggs being wasted every year.

In another move set to increase its sustainability credentials, Waitrose will now sell pullet eggs at £1.99 for a packet of four.

“Pullet eggs are a chef’s dream especially when it comes to pastry. Thanks to their smaller nature they hold their shape a lot better which makes them idea for poaching. The yolks have a wonderful deep colour and rich flavour, making them perfect for mayonnaise or pastry such as a lemon tart or creme brûlée,” said Waitrose development chef Zoe Simons.

It’s the latest initiative in a series of efforts from Waitrose to improve its eco-credentials.

At the start of the month the up-market grocer announced it had extended its Unpacked concept to three extra stores, encouraging customers to do their grocery shopping in refillable containers.

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12 COMMENTS

  1. I appreciate Waitrose’s stance on food waste and sustainability. However if these pullet eggs are generally thrown away why will they retail at a much higher price than standard fee range eggs? I can’t see this move making much of a dent in the 1.5milloion being wasted.

  2. It’s good that someone is finally selling pullet eggs but at £1.99 for4 is a joke. I would be more than happy to buy pullet eggs but certainly not at that price. As with wonky veg which I buy they all taste the same. Waste like that is CRIMINAL.

  3. Imagine my shock when I checked the egg consumption of the UK. It’s 13 billion a year or 33 million a day. So this initiative will save just over an hour’s worth of eggs. Good job all round.

  4. £1.99 for 4 small pullet eggs ie 50p per egg when normal size eggs are only 35p each. This is just greed, while pretending to reduce food waste! If Waitrose really has the heart to reduce food waste, these smaller eggs should be priced more affordable so that more people can buy and support this plan.

  5. Teenage hens? The truth is that farmers send the poor things for slaughter at around 18months old so they don’t live to be ‘teenage’.

  6. Waitrose are doing their best and they do pay their suppliers more, therefore good to shop there. I would happily buy the small eggs for £1.99.

  7. Just another way to exploit animals and make a profit. Shame people didn’t consider all the male chicks that are born into the industry, they don’t even get to see a few days let alone be a so called “teenage” hen they are chucked in grinding machines alive as they are not profitable. So what happens to all the teenagers when they stop laying little eggs? Cramped dirty conditions, loss of feathers, stress, slaughterhouse… All a out profit

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