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MINNEAPOLIS -- The nation's largest animal protection organization praised Sunflower Market, a new natural foods grocer owned by Supervalu, Inc. here, for adopting a policy against the sale of eggs from caged birds. The growing Midwestern natural foods chain exclusively offers cage-free eggs, which the Humane Society of the United States (HSUS) applauded as an important policy to promote animal welfare.
With administrative offices in Minneapolis, Sunflower Market currently has one store open in Indianapolis. In 2006 the company plans to open another store in Chicago, as well as two stores in Columbus, Ohio. Sunflower Market plans to have 50 stores in five years throughout the Midwest, and it has chosen to sell exclusively cage-free eggs in all its stores.
"Our cage-free egg policy is consistent with our commitment to animal welfare," explained John Sturm, v.p. of Sunflower Markets. "It also fits perfectly with our high standards on natural and organic foods."
Sunflower Market joins a growing national trend away from eggs from caged hens. Retailers such as Whole Foods Market and Wild Oats Natural Marketplace have eliminated their sales of cage eggs, and all Trader Joe's brand eggs are now cage-free.
"The HSUS commends Sunflower Market for its cage-free egg policy," said Paul Shapiro, factory farming campaign director for HSUS. "By refusing to sell eggs from caged birds, Sunflower Market is demonstrating just how important it is to incorporate animal welfare policies into socially responsible business models."