CSES Research Project

Overview   Final Results

The objective of the Coalition’s research was to evaluate various laying hen housing systems by considering the impact of multiple variables on a sustainable system.

Commercial scale systems-based research in this area was lacking. Engaging in a holistic, commercial-scale study to evaluate various laying hen housing systems and potential impacts on food safety, the environment, hen health and well-being, worker health and safety and food affordability, provides food system stakeholders with science-based information on sustainability factors to guide informed production and purchasing decisions.

The three housing systems researched were conventional cage, enriched colony and cage-free aviary.

Researchers from Michigan State University, University of California, Davis, Iowa State University, and USDA Agricultural Research Service all participated in the research. Specialized ergonomics research was provided by Cargill Kitchen Solutions.

The research was conducted on a commercial farm in the Midwest, with all three housing systems in the same location.