Thursday, November 3, 2016

Foodservice giants want slower-growing chickens

Two giants in the United States foodservice industry have announced they will be requiring their chicken to be strains that are slower growing.

Compass Group and Global Animal Partnership (GAP), an animal welfare organization based at Austin, Texas, jointly announced the standards will come into force by 2024 as part of GAP's 5-Step Animal Welfare Rating program.

Compass sources about 60 million broiler chickens per year, has 270,000 employees and annual sales of $14 billion.

Key areas of the standard will include:

     using approved genetic strains and meeting criteria for any new strains, to be assessed
     enrichments including hay bales, perches, and natural light, 
     and minimum space requirements (six pounds per square foot).

Compass has also agreed to require, by 2024, that all broilers in its supply chain be rendered unconscious prior to shackling using a method of Controlled Atmosphere Killing. Compass will also annually benchmark its progress, and publicly report performance.

Aramark announcement similar GAP standards and deadlines, but its joint news release was with the Humane Society of the United States and Compassion in World Farming.

Aramark has 270,000 employees and $14 billion in annual revenues.

Oh, my, but where will all this political correctness take us?