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Broilers & Layers / Egg Production
on October 21, 2014

Eating chicken at 40,000 feet

Animal welfare charity praises better use of layer hen meat, welfare-friendly rearing

Animal welfare charity Compassion in World Farming (CIWF) is highlighting the work of Dutch airline KLM to reduce its environmental impact and support a sustainable society, particularly where chicken is concerned.

KLM has been offering in-flight sandwiches made using higher-welfare meat, and that resulted in the charity awarding it the Good Chicken Award.

Through a smart and sustainable supply chain, CIWF notes, KLM makes good use of meat from humanely reared ex-laying hens, which would normally be slaughtered earlier and used for products such as soup.

The birds are reared in the Rondeel system which has been awarded the maximum three-star rating of the Dutch welfare group Dieren Bescherming.

Dutch sandwich supplier Qizini, which supplies 3.5 million chicken sandwiches to KLM every year, has been buying the meat from the ex-Rondeel birds. Approximately 80-90 percent of Rondeel’s hens, at the end of their laying lives, are used in KLM’s in-flight sandwiches, supplied by Qizini.

Frank Vos, Qizini’s commercial manager commented: “We were very excited about the prospect of being able to offer something a bit different – a product which truly values the life of laying hens.”

Roel Verweill, food and beverage manager at KLM said: “We loved the concept of using this chicken meat in our sandwiches. It’s one that truly values the hens’ lives and is a great story to tell. By rationalizing our on-board food offer and reducing the variety of sandwich flavors we use, we are now able to provide our customers high-quality, ethical food at the same cost.”

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