Burger King has committed to phasing out the use of controversial eggs from systems that confine hens in cages in Indonesia. The move comes after dialogue with Act For Farmed Animals, a coalition formed by NGOs Sinergia Animal and Animal Friends Jogja.
“This first commitment from one of the world’s biggest fast-food chains has the potential to reduce the suffering of millions of animals in Indonesia, and we hope that many companies will follow suit,” says Fadilah Rahma, Act for Farmed Animals communications manager.
The practice of sourcing cage-free eggs is relatively new to the food industry in Indonesia, but it is a growing trend around the world. Currently, more than 1,000 companies worldwide have declared policies only to source only cage-free eggs in their supply chains. For example, many international companies like Sodexo, Compass Group, Nestlé, and Unilever have already committed to stop sourcing eggs from facilities that use cages worldwide, including in Indonesia. Aside from that, battery cages have already been banned in the whole European Union and in many states in the US.
Burger King has 147 locations and serves 7 million customers across 7 cities in the country, and the commitment applies to its current and future locations. The transition will be finished by 2027.
Burger King Indonesia's commitment in Bahasa Indonesia
Battery cages reality
Indonesia is the largest egg-producer country in Southeast Asia and the third leading country in the Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation (after only China and USA).
The majority of the 150 million laying hens in Indonesia are kept in battery cages, a system considered as one of the cruelest practices in animal agriculture. Hens spend their whole lives in a space smaller than an A4-sized sheet of paper, in which they cannot even walk or stretch their wings completely. Because the cages are too crowded, the hens' bodies' constant contact with the metal bars makes them lose their feathers. The lack of physical exercise causes them painful bone diseases and fractures. Cage-free farms can significantly reduce the suffering of laying hens, as they allow animals to express most of their natural behaviors - such as moving freely, nesting, pecking, and perching.
Besides that, the food safety conditions of these farms are also a major concern. Major studies conducted in the European Union reveal that the risk of salmonella contamination in cage farms is significantly higher than in cage-free farms. According to the World Health Organization, one of the most prevalent types of salmonella "is estimated to cause 93.8 million cases of acute gastroenteritis and 155,000 deaths globally each year, approximately 85% of which are estimated to be foodborne."
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Act For Farmed Animals is working diligently, through negotiations and campaigns, to get more companies to join this movement in Indonesia. You can be a part of it by signing up to volunteer: with quick and easy online actions, you can help reduce the suffering of millions of animals.
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