Dutch invention: Climate-neutral eggs are now available in stores in the US too

Interested in organic food

Open farms in the U.S. operate the same way, Zanders says. Already in 2017, shortly after the construction of the first farm in the Netherlands was completed, Kipster was approached by the supermarket chain Kroger from the United States. “They heard about us and immediately got excited. ‘Can we do this?’ They asked. Of course, we said, even though we’ve only just started.” It took years of research, contracts and regulations, but the first location in Indiana kicked off the ground in 2021. The first eggs have been on American shelves since late last year. There will soon be 100,000 Gibster chickens in America.

“What kind of reactions have there been? It’s hard to say. We’re expecting a better film in the second half of the year based on sales figures. Anyway, we’ve gotten some attention. American media have written about us, including The Washington Post.” Eggs are available mainly in stores on the West Coast, Zanders knows. “America is a big country and especially on the West Coast there is an interest in organic food and sustainability,” he says.

Big step for America

At the same time, the move to the hipster egg is a big one for Americans. Janders: “Even though the European Union put an end to battery cages with regulations in 2012, the U.S. isn’t there yet. A lot of farms are just transitioning from caged chickens to free-range chickens. And then the step chicken for Gipster, which is taking up more space, is huge. It’s great to have entrepreneurs who really want this. ”

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According to Zanders, Gipster’s chickens actually have better lives than chickens on other farms. At the same time, it continues to sting, he admits. Because even though chickens have the best life, they are kept for egg production and eventually go to slaughter. “We’re constantly working to make life as good as possible for chickens. It’s an illusion that we can keep chickens here because they live in nature and that’s problematic. Ultimately, we believe it’s important for people to do that. If they eat an animal product, the product comes from an animal that has been treated as much as possible. That’s where you can get the most bang for your buck in terms of climate, energy and animal welfare. Do you have that kind of product.”

Now that its first expansion to the US is a reality, the company is looking at how it can grow in Europe. There are plans for France, Belgium and the UK. “We’re busy with it,” says Zanders. “But I expect another shovel in the ground somewhere, at least in the second half of the year.”

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