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Egg Innovations Leads the U.S. Egg Industry Towards a More Humane Future with In-Ovo Sexing Technology

Courtesy of Unsplash
Courtesy of Unsplash

Egg Innovations has announced its commitment to implement in-ovo sexing technology across its family farms. This initiative marks Egg Innovations as the first U.S.-based company to embrace a technology only utilized in Europe, aiming to set a new standard in ethical egg production by eliminating the practice of chick culling.

John Brunnquell, Ph.D., the founder and CEO of Egg Innovations, emphasized the core values that drive the company: "Humane care is the ethos in which Egg Innovations was founded. This commitment to in-ovo sexing is a huge step as we will be able to label our products 'free of chick culling.' While it's an unknown if the market is ready to embrace this, we know it's the right thing to do. We are excited to trailblaze with this technology in the U.S. for the well-being of our products, customers, and industry."

In-ovo sexing technology allows for the determination of a chick's sex before it hatches, enabling egg producers to hatch only female chicks and thus avoid the contentious practice of male chick culling. This technological advancement is poised to revolutionize the industry by fostering a more humane approach to egg production that aligns with Egg Innovations' mission to care for "Chickens. People. Planet."

The introduction of in-ovo sexing technology is not just a win for animal welfare; it represents a significant opportunity for the egg industry to innovate and meet the growing consumer demand for ethically produced food. Robert Yaman, CEO of Innovate Animal Ag, commented on the potential market impact: "The introduction of in-ovo sexing technology will allow for specialty egg producers to create a new higher-margin category of more ethical eggs that will be better for the chicks, producers, and consumers. This is a large step towards eliminating chick culling in the U.S. egg industry."

The decision by Egg Innovations to implement this technology has been met with praise from animal welfare advocates, including the ASPCA. Nancy Roulston, Senior Director of Corporate Policy and Animal Science at the ASPCA Farm Animal Welfare, highlighted the significance of this move: "For decades now, billions of newly hatched male chicks have been culled every year—making this one of the most urgent farm animal welfare issues today. We are thrilled that Egg Innovations has committed to just that, and we urge others across the egg industry to adopt this groundbreaking technology to advance animal welfare."

In-ovo sexing technology, which identifies the sex of developing chicken eggs, promises to make the routine culling of male chicks in egg production a practice of the past. Egg Innovations, with its longstanding mission to promote humane care for chickens, is leading by example, showing how investments in technology can pave the way for a more ethical and sustainable future in agriculture.

Egg Innovations plans to roll out this ethical commitment through its regenerative farming Helpful Hens™ brand, aiming to introduce it to egg consumers nationwide by 2025. As the egg industry watches, Egg Innovations' pioneering efforts in adopting in-ovo sexing technology could herald a new era of animal welfare and ethical production practices, setting a benchmark for others to follow.


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