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British retailer Sainsbury’s has committed to offer its customers free-range eggs in-store and online from April next year.

The move makes Sainsbury’s the first major UK retailer to offer 100% free-range eggs. The company currently sells around 800 million eggs annually.

This commitment complements the company’s announcement to go 100% cage-free for eggs in 2009.

The retailer currently sources all own-brand eggs from the Royal Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals (RSPCA-assured) farms, such as The Lakes Free Range Egg.

The Lakes Free Range Eggs owner David Brass said: “It is a privilege to work with Sainsbury’s to supply 100% high welfare free-range eggs.

“This is a great example of Sainsbury’s holding the needs of its customers at the heart of the decisions it makes – delivering quality, sustainably produced eggs, whilst driving the highest standards of hen welfare and biodiversity through the planting of millions of trees for them to roam in.”

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By GlobalData

Sainsbury’s has also introduced an online egg tracker, enabling customers to trace an individual egg back to the farm to know where it is sourced from.

Sainsbury’s brand director Judith Batchelar said: “We know our customers care about where their eggs come from and that they’re responsibly sourced.

“We’re committed to offering the best possible quality and value, while ensuring high welfare standards and helping to restore the environment at the same time.

“That’s why every egg we sell will soon be sourced from free-range farms in the UK and we’re confident our customers will be able to taste the difference.”

Last month, Sainsbury’s announced plans to close up to 125 stores across its portfolio.

In June this year, the British retailer announced its commitment to remove plastic bags from its fruit and vegetable aisles through a pilot programme.