he University of Delaware has announced that it has decided not to begin purchasing so-called "cage free" eggs for its dining halls, though it will offer cage-free eggs for purchase by students in its POD Market retail store.
Cost is a significant factor in the decision, the school says. An analysis by the Dining Department determined that it would cost an additional $100,000 annually to serve cage-free eggs exclusively on the university campus, meaning either an increase in dining rates charged to students or a reduction of dining program offerings.
UD emphasized that the eggs it purchases comply with all government and industry standards and bear certification from the United Egg Producers, which provides assurances that laying hens receive adequate space, nutritious food, clean water, proper lighting and fresh air daily. Furthermore, the school notes, there is no current standard legal definition of what constitutes a "cage free egg," though federal legislation on the matter is under discussion.