Animal rights activists are calling on Countdown to permanently remove cage eggs from its shelves after footage showed dead hens rotting in their cages.

The supermarket chain announced this month it would take all its eggs sourced from the Waikato farm where the footage was shot until it could be sure the farm's practices were up to scratch.

Protesters will gather this morning outside the Countdown in Pukekohe to call on the chain to remove the eggs permanently.

"It's not enough for Countdown to remove the eggs from this farm temporarily," Ban Chicken Layer Cages spokeswoman Peta Berry said.


"Colony cages have been shown to be the cause of death for these hens and these cages need to be banned permanently."

Earlier this month, Countdown spokesman James Walker said none of its eggs came from the Waikato farm's colony caged hens, but 14 of its stores did stock a small number of its conventional caged eggs.

"The footage shown is disturbing and disappointing to us," he said.

Mr Walker said Countdown expected all its egg suppliers to meet appropriate welfare standards and to comply with the Animal Welfare (Layer Hens) Code of Welfare 2012.