Partnerships can make a difference for the welfare of chickens

Global, large-scale industry changes are key to improving the lives of the 70 billion animals that are fed annually.

Imagine yourself as a unhatched chick ready to go into the world. Your egg has been warm and safe for 20 days. You finally get out of your egg after hours of hard work. It is one of nature’s greatest miracles. If you are one of those unlucky birds, you will spend your entire life in a cramped cage laying eggs for the rest of the world. This is the reality that millions of chicks face every year.

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This story has a happy ending, thankfully. We are slowly, but surely moving towards a “post cage” era for egg-laying chicks. Nestle, the largest food and beverage company in the world, has announced that all eggs it purchases in the United States from 2020 will be produced by cage-free farms. This means that millions of hens will live better lives each year by living in cage-free farms. This is something we are proud of.

Multinational corporations like Nestle can make significant changes to their supply chains, which can have profound effects on the lives of millions of farm animals. Nestle joins a growing number of companies, including Panera, Taco Bell, and McDonald’s that recognize that a chicken’s cage is not a safe place to be.

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Partnerships for good

Since 2014, we have worked closely with Nestle to ensure that the welfare of the animals they raise for food is as high as possible. It is not about meeting the government’s standards. These can vary from one country to the next. It’s about innovating in order to satisfy the needs of the public who are increasingly demanding sustenance, without suffering as is common in many industrial farming systems.

Nestle’s work is making a positive impact on the lives of animals. We are proud. We are confident that Nestle will continue to invent. The company, whose slogan is “Good Food, Good Life”, made a public commitment to improve farm animal welfare in its global supply chains in 2014. Benjamin Ware, the Manager of Responsible Sourcing at the company, stated that “we know that our customers care about the welfare and health of farm animals” and that they were committed to ensuring that the global supply chain has the best possible standards of animal welfare.

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Navigating the complexities of large businesses

Our partnership with Nestle is built on mutual respect and honesty, just like any other successful relationship. Nestle is complex and global, so we understand that change will take time. Nestle is committed to protecting animals and making sure they live happy lives.

This is how we approach our partnerships. We make it clear that we are there not only to support, but also to challenge and, when success occurs (as in Nestle’s eggs in the United States), we champion those successes.

The animal movement is, quite correctly, passionate and loud. It’s not known for its willingness to partner with big business. It is understandable. Too long, corporations, as well as other industries, have been slow to recognize the importance of animal protection and instead moved at a glacial pace to meet minimum legal standards. We have a clear strategy for creating global changes for animals. It is not to try to solve just one part of the problem, but to address the whole issue. We work with business and other important stakeholders to help solve the problem.

Farm animals need more support to make their lives easier.

Our model for change also has a secret weapon: you. All of us are customers, and food companies such as Nestle will respond to our needs. We can make the best choices for animals and work together to ensure a better future of farm animals all over the globe by working with food companies.

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Although it is not easy to change the world, our work helps improve the lives of millions upon millions of farm animals around the globe. We don’t just care about chickens; we also work to protect animals in agriculture. Read more about how we support 70 billion farm animals.