Nestlé, the world’s largest food company, announced this week that it will transition to using only cage-free eggs in all of its U.S. products within the next five years.
uses approximately 20 million pounds of eggs annually to help create some of America’s most beloved food brands, including Häagen-Dazs which it owns with General Mills, Dreyer’s and Edy’s ice creams, Nestlé Toll House cookie dough and Buitoni pasta. Eggs are also an important part of Lean Cuisine and Stouffer’s popular breakfast items, the company said.
“Our products are in the fridges and pantries of socially-conscious consumers across the United States, and we share their belief in the importance of responsibly-sourced ingredients,” said Paul Grimwood, chairman and chief executive officer of Nestlé USA. “The move to using exclusively cage-free eggs is one more way that we’re responding to consumers and establishing a precedent for farm animal welfare.”
The pledge to use exclusively cage-free eggs in the U.S. by 2020 builds on Nestlé’s animal welfare commitment launched in 2012. As part of this commitment, the company outlined its plan to eliminate specific farming practices, like tail docking for cattle and pigs, gestation crates for pigs and veal crates.
Nestlé works with World Animal Protection and SGS to assess its suppliers against these commitments.
The company also said it is currently developing pilot projects with its suppliers and World Animal Protection to establish a roadmap for sourcing cage free eggs in Europe and the rest of the world.
Einstein Bros. Bagels, Caribou Coffee, Peet’s Coffee, Shake Shack, Carnival Corporation, and Flower Foods, a $3.7 billion baking company, also made similar cage-free announcements.