These tend to be the cheapest variety of egg and come from the unhappiest hens (excluding eggs from caged hens). A barn system keeps flocks of hens inside with room to move and nest boxes to lay eggs on. A minimum of one-third of the area they are housed in is covered in litter material to keep the hens happy. However, they may still have very limited space.
Free-range hens have the same indoor space as barn hens however, these birds can also go outside and enjoy the sunshine during the day.
Similar to free-range however, government legislation sets additional welfare requirements. They eat an organic feed and don’t receive vaccines or antibiotics. The grains used for the hens’ diets must be produced on land that has been free from the use of toxic and persistent chemical pesticides and fertilizers for at least three years. For dedicated attention to farm animal welfare, look out for the Freedom Food logo as well.