How would our food choices be different if labels had to provide a more transparent view of the production systems behind the products? If, for example, food labels were used to disclose the kinds or amount of pesticides and synthetic fertilizer that were used to grow the food, whether the workers had been exploited, or how animals were treated? And instead of being seen as some special, elite option, organic, fair trade, and antibiotic-free food came to be seen as the less complicated options?
It might sound unrealistic, but get this: In the case of eggs, this
type of labeling has been going on in the European Union since 2004. In
the E.U., all eggs that appear in stores must be labeled with one of
three choices: “eggs from caged hens”; “barn eggs,” which come from hens
we call “cage-free” here in the U.S. (i.e. they’re still raised in big
indoor facilities); and “free-range.” They also stamp a number,
in ascending order from more desired to least, on the eggs themselves
(0 is code for organic eggs and 3 is code for eggs from caged hens). Read more on TakePart.