EU Egg Production Is Slowly Declining
The poultry industry in the European Union (EU) is slowly on the decline due to the increasing number of regulations regarding the environment and bird welfare. According to WorldPoultry.net, this decline results in higher costs, changing marketing structures, and a drop in production capacity and global competitiveness.
The EU poultry industry is on the decline even though demand has mostly stabilised and consumption remains strong.
There is some decline in demand for eggs within the EU, although consumption has been stable. This decrease in demand is attributed instead to a declining population and changing consumer behavior. Total egg output has declined similarly due to increasing production costs, including higher feed prices and costs associated with protecting the environment and bird welfare.
Production has declined within various countries as the 2012 EU-wide ban on traditional cages nears. In response to this upcoming ban, some egg producers have already replaced their existing cage systems, whiles some others have decided to close down altogether (primarily in Belgium).
Although evidence of waning consumer trust was apparent in 2003, consumer confidence appears to have rebounded. However, there is a still a declining trend in total demand for poultry in the EU because of population shifts and changes in consumption patterns.
Note: the full article includes egg production and per capita egg consumption data for each EU country for 2004-2006.