February 21, 2012, Bon Appétit announced the rollout of the food
service industry’s most comprehensive farm animal welfare policy to
date, to be implemented in all of our 400 cafes in 31 states.
As part of the new policy, Bon Appétit is:
- Requiring that ALL pork it serves — currently 3 million pounds annually — be produced without gestation crate confinement systems, using higher-welfare group housing systems instead, by 2015.
- Switching ALL of its pre-cracked (liquid) eggs — currently 11 million eggs annually — from hens confined in barren battery cages to hens living in cage-free farms, as it already does for shell eggs, by 2015*
- Entirely eliminating foie gras (livers of force-fed ducks) and veal from calves confined in crates from its menus, effective immediately.
Bon Appétit will continue to work with the most responsible meat and poultry producers to pursue Animal Welfare Approved, Food Alliance, Humane Farm Animal Care or Global Animal Partnership certification of their animal welfare practices. These four programs have standards that not only prohibit such cruel practices as gestation crates and battery cages, but also require animals to be allowed to engage in their natural behaviors. Bon Appétit vows that by 2015, 25 percent or more of its meat, poultry and egg purchases companywide will be sourced from producers that meet at least one of these four certifications.
The company has always encouraged the best farms amongst its suppliers to get the recognition they deserve. This announcement sets an important new baseline for the minimum standards it will accept.