Free Range Egg Farming
In the picturesque rural community of Darbalara, on the east bank of the junction of the Murrumbidgee and Tumut rivers in the NSW Riverina region, is the Sadler family’s 121 hectare farm.
The Sadler family raises White Leghorn chickens which produce the less commonly found all white eggs. “There’s nothing for miles except for our farms, the chickens, the rivers and a single telephone exchange.”
Riverina Free Range Egg Farming: The chickens are pastured day and night on a former turf farm with rich soil, lush grasses and access to a running creek, and at 1500 hens per hectare they’ve plenty of space to roam freely. Given the farm used to be a turf farm with rich soil, the chickens love it. Committed to pasture farming, the Sadler family collects the eggs laid in the fields by hand with care.
Riverina Terroir: Slightly hilly pastures with lush grass and tree cover the Riverina extends north to south along several rivers and tributaries. With hot summers, cool winters, and rainfall through winter months, the Riverina is one of Australia’s most productive agricultural regions. Brimming with high variety of native flora and fauna, the recognised Riverina Bioregion makes up almost 10% of NSW’s land area.
Egg Tasting Notes: Expect a great depth of earthy characters which the Sadler family attributes to the hens’ freedom to graze on pasture and a special seed mix.
What makes an egg organic? It’s their special, certified organic feed and pesticide free pastures they roam upon that results in organic eggs.
Run by the pioneering Caccamo family who started organic farming in the early 2000s, the Delucas organic eggs are a leading choice for quality, tasty and certified organic eggs.
Hunter Valley Ranges Organic Farming: Laid by russet red Hy-Line Brown chickens at 1000 hens per hectare, the 40 hectare Hunter Valley Ranges farm in the Wollemi National Park has hilly and flat areas, abundant grass and a 1km frontage to the McDonald River. The chickens range freely with access to open barns. The Caccamo family believes “you produce the best with the best” and so they pay special attention to creating a perfectly balanced diet for their hens.
“We make sure they have the best grain, access to water and protection. Everything is done by hand. We pick the eggs by hand. We can be a really hands-on farm because it’s smaller than other egg farms.”
Hunter Valley Ranges Terroir: the World Heritage Listed Wollemi National Park sits within the Blue Mountain and Lower Hunter ranges, 130km north-west of Sydney. With dramatic landscapes and scenery, lush valleys and granite and limestone bluffs, the previously bushfire affected Wollemi area is showing signs of recovery and regrowth.
Egg Tasting Notes: Rich egg yolks with a sweetness you simply must try!
Free Range Egg Farming in Australia
Federal legislation under the Australian Consumer Law, defining free range egg farming was passed in 2018.
To be considered free range eggs, the laying hens must have meaningful and regular access to an outdoor range during daylight hours (for at least eight hours a day), and be free to roam and forage outside. Free range farms can have a maximum outdoor stocking density of 10,000 hens per hectare, and free range eggs must clearly state the farming density on the packaging.
The CSIRO’s Model Code of Practice recommends a maximum of 1500 hens per hectare on an open range – that’s six times less than the Government standard. With such a range in free range egg farming standards, you can see why we feel it’s important to understand where your eggs come from.
The Eggzi Free Range Commitment
Our commitment to sourcing the best free range eggs goes beyond the minimum certification requirements. We seek out passionate and committed egg farmers across Australia from regions that produce amazing growing conditions and as a result, the tastiest eggs.