Asda has launched a campaign backing British free range eggs producers and has called on other UK supermarkets to stop selling 'lower quality' imported eggs.

It will not sell any eggs from abroad in either its own-label or branded ranges and has challenged its rivals, which it has dubbed 'the dirty dozen', to do the same.

Only Waitrose and Marks and Spencer are in a position to make the same commitment as Asda, it claims.

“It's a clucking disgrace that the dirty dozen are prepared to turn their backs on British free range eggs and opt for 'cheap, cheap' imports,” said Asda egg buyer Hannah Naseem.

John Widdowson, vice chairman of the British Free Range Egg Producers Association, added: “We want to see all retailers supporting British free range egg producers. There is no reason why British farmers can't supply all of the free range eggs consumers want to buy - but they need supermarkets to invest here in the UK.”