Tuesday, 21. May 2013 - 23:05
21. 03. 12. - 07:00
German supermarkets have become the first to start rationing egg sales in the run up to Easter after a shortage of eggs triggered by new animal welfare rules.
The EU banned the use of the smallest battery hen cages in January, and although UK farmers spent 400 million upgrading their farms many simply gave up.
And the problem has been exacerbated by the fact that egg producing counterparts in countries such as Spain and France failed to meet the deadline for removing battery cages, which means they are banned from exporting their eggs.
The result is that Europe and the UK do not have enough eggs to meet demand.
In Europe German supermarkets in some parts of the country such as along the Czech border have rationed sales. Czechs who have seen a substantial rise in egg prices to twice the levels now paid in Germany. As a result many have driven to Germany and filled their entire boot with eggs before returning home.
Netto supermarket spokeswoman Christina Stylianou confirmed the restrictions allowing clients to only buy two dozen eggs at a time.
She said: "We want to make sure that all of our customers have access to the normal number of eggs they might expect to consume."
And German chain Kaufland eggs are also rationed on the border, with a maximum of 50 eggs per person.
Shoppers in the UK buying eggs from supermarkets, which have been able to limit the increases because of contract arrangements with suppliers, face a price rise of about 20p a dozen but next year the prices are set to rise far more sharply.
(will be approved by an editor before going online)
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