Cage-Free vs. Free Range: Why It's Important

My kids eat so many eggs, I’m surprised they aren’t clucking. I pretty much rotate through the egg cycle for breakfast each day – scrambled on Mondays, fried on Tuesdays, omelets on Wednesday, poached on Thursday. My daughter loves a sliced egg sandwich with a little bit of mayo, my son is a deviled egg fiend, and okay, I’ll admit it – they would prefer eggs for dinner over just about anything else.


Now, I know it could be a whole lot worse. They could insist on fried food or sugary food or processed food every single day, at every single meal. So, I’m pretty happy that eggs are their go-to staple. Especially because I can sneak all kinds of veggies in and hide them so well that they don’t even pick them out.

Once I realized what was going on – that my kids were eating more eggs than I could buy – I knew I had to make sure they were at least “good-for-you” eggs! I stopped buying the store brand and started buying cage-free eggs.

So there I was, thinking I had made a really good mom move, until my daughter did a report on hens for school. Ugh. I learned all about what cage-free really meant! They can actually cram tons of hens into huge buildings and still call them “cage-free.” But that certainly doesn’t mean that they are roaming free. She showed us this crazy video (check it out here) and the whole family became hen advocates on the spot!

Now we’re Nellie’s Free Range fans. That’s all I’ll buy. For two reasons. One, because of how they raise their hens. And, two because of how I raise my kids! I want them to have the healthiest choices out there.

So, Nellie’s are 100% Grade A Certified Humane free range eggs. That means the hens aren’t confined to cages or enclosures – they’re free to roam around and explore the barns. They live on real, small family farms, not in factories that call themselves farms. The hens get to roam free and live themselves a really good life. And, best of all, the eggs contain no hormones or antibiotics. Cause with the amount of eggs my kids eat, I can’t help but think about things like that!

Just be careful, because some eggs claim to be from hens that are humanely raised, but you really need to see the Certified Humane seal to be sure. Nellie’s was the first egg farm in the country to earn this seal on their carton.

And what my kids really love is that there was actually a real Nellie. Nellie’s is named after the founder, Jesse’s pet hen who loved riding around in Jesse’s bicycle basket. Your kids will love the story and you can read about the original Nellie right here.

I’m ashamed to say that I spent way too many years not giving a cluck about hens. I simply bought cartons and cartons of whatever eggs were on sale without giving any thought to where they came from. But now that I know, I won’t buy anything but Nellie’s Free Range Eggs.

I truly believe that all kids, not to mention all hens, deserve to have Nellie’s in their life!


Read More >