If you care enough to buy cage free eggs, care enough to do the right thing. If you care, ASK the person selling you eggs.
I appreciate that chicken farmers are just trying to make a living like everyone else. But stop trying to fool the public. Unless you are buying your eggs from a farmer, you are probably not making the statement you are trying to make.
This is what free range chickens look like - they roam freely during the day and come home to a secure coop at night:
This is what caged chickens look like:
So, you know you don't want to encourage the caged chicken industry, but there are a lot of people trying to trick you doing something you are trying NOT to do.
This is what a "Cage Free" facility looks like - when you buy those Cage Free eggs at Food Lion, you are not really doing yourself, or the chickens, any favors:
Free range chickens? Unfortunately, USDA regulations indicate solely that the animal has been allowed access to the outside - quality or size of the outside range nor the duration of time the animal must be allowed access to this space. So it might look like this:
This is better, but still not what you think you are getting:
Pasture raised typically means the hens have been given access to some type of pasture. This may be a wonderful thing, or not so much. Ask your farmer!