In Barn egg farming, hens are housed in large sheds with a litter floor. There are perches for hens to roost and sleep on, and nest boxes are available for egg laying. Areas of raised slats provide a change of level and assist with maintaining good shed hygiene. Unlike in Free-range egg farming, the birds do not have access to the outdoors; to compensate, a higher area per hen is provided. The marketing term “cage-free” is often used to describe Barn egg farming.
The Animal Welfare (Layer Hens) Code of Welfare 2012 sets out the standards of care and management for layer hens in New Zealand. It includes specific standards for Barn egg farming.