Meet The Schoolgirl Taking On Tesco Over Chicken Welfare Standards

Lucy Gavaghan, a 14-year-old from Sheffield, started a petition calling on the supermarket giant Tesco to stop selling eggs from caged and barn-reared hens. It has now received over 140,000 signatures.

Lucy Gavaghan

Lewis Whyld

A petition started by a 14-year-old schoolgirl calling on Tesco to stop the sale of eggs from caged hens is gaining traction, receiving more than 140,000 signatures.

Lucy Gavaghan, from Sheffield, started a petition on last month asking the supermarket giant to stop the sale of the eggs. She says the caged birds live in “cruel, unnatural” conditions.

In 2012 Sainsbury’s became the first major retailer to stop using the cages, which campaigners claim can hold up to 90 birds, and have small perches and a small nesting area.

However, Tesco, Asda, and Morrisons continue to use them.

“I’ve been writing letters to supermarkets for a while and I know others have been doing the same, but they have not taken much notice at all,” Lucy told BuzzFeed News.

“Sainsbury’s, M&S, and Waitrose don’t sell eggs [from caged hens]. The idea is to target Tesco to make the change as the market leader.”

The teenager also wants Tesco to stop selling eggs from barn-reared hens, in favour of free-range eggs, because she says chickens in barns can “barely move or stretch their wings” and “never get to experience the real outside world”.

“Tesco is one of the biggest supermarket chains in the country. If it stopped selling cage and barn eggs it would drastically reduce the number of hens who spend their lives in cages and barns. It would also send a message to other supermarkets that this is an option that is realistic and achievable.”

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