May 24, 2012
WSPA applauds Safeway, one of North America's largest grocery retailers, for announcing plans to source 100% of their pork from suppliers that do not use gestation crates. Their commitment to improving animal welfare standards means a better life for sows that are now able to turn around, move and express natural behaviours.
"Safeway has proven to be one of the most progressive grocery chains in North America, in terms of encouraging more humane and sustainable farming practices”, says Melissa Matlow, WSPA Campaigns Manager, Humane and Sustainable Agriculture. In 2008, the chain committed to doubling the quantity of cage-free eggs available for customers and launched their own private brand of cage-free eggs, Lucerne Cage Free. "We hope Safeway will continue to be a leader for animal welfare and continue to increase their cage-free egg supply and improve the lives of thousands of hens in North America," says Matlow.
Safeway's commitment to sustainability and better animal welfare is an important step in addressing Canadian consumers' concerns about how their food is produced. WSPA's new report, What's On Your Plate: The Hidden Costs of Industrial Animal Agriculture in Canada demonstrates the real impact of our current food system on animal welfare, the environment, public health and rural communities. In line with Safeway's announcement, the report also calls for a nation-wide phase-out of the cages and crates that are used to confine the majority of pregnant sows, egg laying hens and veal calves in Canada. These are considered the cruellest forms of intensive confinement and cause immense suffering for animals.
"The most restrictive production systems should be phased out," write two of North America's leading animal welfare scientists, Dr. Ian Duncan and Dr. Bernard Rollin. "All other systems should ensure that animals can live free from intense frustration, fear, discomfort, deprivation, maternal separation, social stress and boredom", they note in the report.
"Governments and food companies around the world are encouraging more cage-free egg and pork production. We hope Safeway's commitment will set an example for other grocery chains working towards more humane and sustainable food." says Matlow.blog comments powered by Disqus