Countdown statement on eggs - 14 March 2017
14 March 2017: Food quality and the integrity of the products on our shelves is paramount to us. We are concerned about media reports alleging that cage eggs may have been sold as free range eggs by Palace Poultry.
Given the severity of what has been alleged, we removed all Palace Poultry products from our shelves on Monday morning.
We are aware of today’s media reports concerning Mainland Poultry and that they have stated they have previously bought eggs from Palace Poultry. Mainland Poultry provide our stores, along with other supermarkets, eggs under the Woodland brand.
Mainland Poultry have today informed us that they stopped purchasing any eggs from Palace Poultry in early February 2017.
We have sought and received assurances from Mainland Farms that all their free range eggs are from verified sources. Therefore, we do not believe it is necessary to withdraw Mainland Farm eggs from sale.
We are now in the process of engaging an independent third party to review the traceability controls in place on all suppliers of free range and barn egg farms to Countdown supermarkets.
We have been in the contact with the Ministry for Primary Industries and the Commerce Commission about this issue. We have been informed that the the Ministry for Primary Industries is supporting the Serious Fraud Office investigation.
We are also discussing the issue with the Egg Producers Federation.