Popeyes became the latest company to adopt the Better Chicken Commitment standards, which will meaningfully improve the welfare of chickens in its supply chain. By signing on to this commitment, Popeyes joined more than 200 brands, including Subway, Starbucks, and Papa Johns, that have committed to such standards of the chickens in its supply chain by 2024. Improvements include:
- Transitioning to breeds determined to have better welfare outcomes
- Providing more space for chickens by reducing maximum stocking density, per Global Animal Partnership (GAP) standards
- Enhancing chickens’ living environments including litter quality, lighting, and enrichment, per GAP standards
- Utilizing a multi-step controlled-atmosphere stunning system to reduce incidents of birds having their throats slit open while still fully conscious.
"Every year billions of chickens suffer in our food system. We commend Popeyes, for taking a significant step toward reducing this suffering with their new policy,” said Leah Garcés, president of Mercy For Animals. “It also makes clear that if the king of chicken sandwich can commit to treating chickens better, there's no excuse for any of their competitors, such as McDonald's, KFC, and Chick-Fil-A, to not follow suit."
Since 2016, Mercy For Animals has been part of a coalition effort to reduce the suffering of chickens used for meat in the food industry. In 2017, Mercy For Animals worked with Restaurant Brands International (RBI), the parent company of Popeyes, to release a groundbreaking commitment for chicken welfare standards at Burger King and Tim Hortons, which are also owned by RBI.