In May, the CSIRO reviewed last year's research program. The CSIRO's 2018 report identified how the egg industry can work to improve the level of trust in, and acceptance of, the industry with the Australian community. It showed that listening and responding to community concerns - within a context of general confidence that high quality eggs are being produced safely and with good standards of hen welfare - is critical for the future of a healthy egg industry in Australia.
In June, the CSIRO developed the survey instrument. The structure and content from last year’s survey remained largely the same to allow a comparison of community sentiment to be made. Additional items were included this year to extend the survey instrument’s measurement capacity and ensure current issues are captured effectively.
In July, the survey went public and a statistically representative sample of 5,630 Australians was recruited through a research panel. A link will also placed on the CSIRO and Australian Eggs websites inviting anyone in the community to participate by completing the survey.
The sample of 5,630 Australians is larger than required to conduct statistical analysis and was designed to ensure the sample is representative of society at large. The sample of community members is representative as it is based on Australian Bureau of Statistics demographic profiles (e.g. age, gender, education) and data collection is spread across all of Australia.
In August, the CSIRO closed the survey and analysed the results. The first step in this process was ‘cleaning’ the data by identifying and managing anything missing that may distort the results and ensuring data is in a form that supports accurate interpretation. Once the data is clean it can be analysed for insights.
In opinion polling or market research, the aim is to provide a surface level understanding of the story in the data. This analysis often provides what is called a ‘descriptive’ account of the data, describing what people think in percentage terms or average scores on each item. This can be useful but it doesn’t provide a deeper understanding of why people think the way they do, or provide much guidance on how to address community concerns.
The CSIRO analysed the community survey data to describe what it looks like and draw inferences as to why it looks that way.
In September, the CSIRO developed the second Australian Egg Industry Community Research Report. The report is available at this link.
In October, the CSIRO released the 2019 report and supported its release by being available to discuss the findings. The research is intended to drive productive engagement between the Australian egg industry and the community.
Engage with egg industry
In November, Australian Eggs engaged with egg industry stakeholders to extend the research to egg farmers. This kind of research usually generates a mix of expected and new insights that require some reflection and discussion. Through discussions with egg farmers and other industry stakeholders a detailed understanding of the research outputs and their implications can be found.
Develop Sustainability Framework Report
In December and January, Australian Eggs developed content for the Sustainability Framework Report. The report included information on the issues raised in the survey to enable the community to better understand the drivers of the egg industry's impacts and contributions. This process was conducted in consultation with egg industry stakeholders and representative bodies to ensure the information provided is accurate and reflects industry practice.
Release Sustainability Framework Report
In February 2020, Australian Eggs published the Sustainability Framework Report for review and consideration by all interested stakeholders. Australian Eggs, egg industry representative bodies and the CSIRO supported the release of the report by being available to discuss the process.
The report, and any subsequent community engagement, will provide useful inputs to the third round of the Sustainability Framework process in 2020.