Coalition of 75+ nonprofits prompts Yum! Brands to adopt global cage-free egg policy.
Yum! Brands, the world’s largest restaurant company, with close to 50,000 locations globally across its KFC, Pizza Hut, Taco Bell, and The Habit Burger Grill brands, today released a global policy to transition to 100% cage-free eggs in the majority of its locations by 2026, and globally by 2030. This commitment is set to benefit millions of hens in its global supply chain, and follows the largest public cage-free campaign to date, led by the Open Wing Alliance.
“Due to the massive size of Yum! Brands’ supply chain, this monumental commitment to exclusively source cage-free eggs will reduce the suffering of millions of hens raised to lay eggs throughout the world,” said Alexandria Beck, Director of Open Wing Alliance. “This policy involves some of the most influential fast food chains and it’s evident that cage-free is becoming the future of the industry.”
“Life in a cage is a life of misery. Yum! Brands’ commitment is the writing on the wall for laggards in the egg industry still sticking to cruel cages,” said Animals Aotearoa Executive Director, Marianne Macdonald. “Yum! Brands joins every progressive food company in Aotearoa in creating the path to a kinder country where hens are given a life worth living.”
Prior to this global commitment, Taco Bell, part of the Yum! Brands group, officially went 100% cage-free in North America and committed to going cage-free in Europe. On August 26, 2021, Yum! Brands released a cage-free policy for the US, Western Europe, and other leading markets. The new global policy commits the company to sourcing 100% cage-freeeggs and egg products in more than 150 countries and regions. This transition will be complete by the end of 2030. The fast food corporation also agreed to provide annual progress reporting to ensure transparency.
The public campaign leading up to Yum! Brands’ commitment was led by member
organizations of the Open Wing Alliance, a coalition united to improve the welfare of
chickens raised in factory farms worldwide. Advocates from 77 influential animal protection organizations in 63 countries joined forces to demand better from Yum! Brands on behalf of its customers and the egg-laying hens suffering daily within its supply chain. Thousands of supporters all around the world joined the effort by taking hundreds of thousands of digital actions, urging Yum! Brands to go cage-free. Live protests also took place—from Serbia, to Nigeria, to Taiwan, and beyond.
Why go cage-free?
Cage farms confine hens in cramped, often filthy cages, where each hen has no more than the space of an iPad to herself. These cages are so small and crowded, the hens cannot engage in their natural or instinctive behaviors. Often, their body parts are caught in the caging, which results in fractured or broken bones, deformities, and severe feather loss.
Some hens, too exhausted or unable to move, are trampled to death by their cage mates. By eliminating cage-systems, the wellbeing of the hens raised in supply chains will see improvements. While more must still be done to make long-term changes to their quality of life, this is a significant first step for egg-laying hens.
As consumer demand for cage-free eggs continues to grow, global companies and industry leaders like Yum! Brands have been abandoning cages. Over 100 global commitments to end cruel cages have been made by some of the largest companies in the world, including Burger King, Dunkin’, Krispy Kreme, Unilever, Nestlé, Aldi, InterContinental Hotels, Sodexo, Kraft Heinz, Compass Group, Shake Shack, Famous Brands, Costa Coffee, and Barilla.
About the Open Wing Alliance
The Open Wing Alliance is a global coalition of animal protection organizations focused on creating a unified front in our campaign to end the abuse of chickens worldwide. The alliance was founded in 2016 by The Humane League and has grown into a global force with more than 75 member organizations changing the way the world’s biggest companies treat animals and setting a new standard for corporate animal welfare policies locally—in every major market—and globally.