Heinz to phase out layer cages, gestation crates

Heinz has adopted a new set of animal welfare guidelines thatincludes a move toward cage-free eggs and pork from crate-free sources.

Heinz has adopted a new set of animal welfare guidelines which will have the global food processor moving toward use of cage-free eggs and pork from crate-free sources.

Heinz moves toward cage-free eggs

Heinz in its new animal welfare program has committed to sourcing its eggs from cage-free hens as suppliers meet the company’s growing request for such eggs. Already using cage-free eggs in Heinz Mayonnaise in the UK, the company is expanding its use of cage-free eggs. Heinz stated it will continue to work with its egg suppliers to review and further understand the options and capabilities in cage-free sourcing going forward.

The company is also urging its stakeholders to work with major egg suppliers and users to bring down the costs of cage-free eggs, which are more expensive than other eggs.

Heinz and crate-free pork

Heinz stated that it supports efforts within the pork industry to move away from using gestation crates for pregnant sows. The company is currently working with its pork suppliers to understand and document their plans to reduce or end the use of gestation crates.

Heinz comments about animal welfare standards

“Heinz recognizes that many consumers have concerns about animal welfare and we take these concerns seriously,” the company stated on its website. “At Heinz we have always been committed to providing safe, wholesome and nourishing foods that enhance the lives and well-being of people everywhere – a philosophy that extends throughout our supply chain, and in particular in our approach to animal welfare. As with all ingredients, the primary concerns for Heinz are safety and quality, and we set strict buying specifications in order to meet these requirements. At Heinz, the provenance of our ingredients is important to us. We have a long-standing history of ensuring traceability in our agricultural supply chain, and we share best practices across our global business. We keep our meat supply chain as short as we can in order to maintain the best possible levels of ingredient traceability.”

Heinz brands include TGI Friday's, Bagel Bites, Ore-Ida and Classico.

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