Compass Group, the world’s largest foodservice company operating thousands of college, corporate, and hospital cafeterias, announced today a commitment to switch to 100 percent cage-free eggs in the U.S. by 2019. Compass joins Sodexo and Aramark, the next-largest foodservice companies, in implementing a totally cage-free egg policy.
All three companies previously held cage-free policies for shell eggs, but because each company purchases more liquid eggs than shell eggs, these expanded cage-free commitments are even more significant. Compass uses 300 million liquid eggs and 100 million shell eggs each year; Sodexo uses 220 million liquid eggs and 39 million shell eggs each year; Aramark uses 200 million liquid eggs and 30 million shell eggs each year. In total, that’s nearly a billion eggs per year, affecting 3.5 million chickens.
About 90 percent of the 280 million egg-laying hens in the U.S. are confined to tiny, wire battery cages so small that birds can’t even spread their wings, walk, or engage in many of their most important natural behaviors. Chickens raised for meat suffer too—our latest investigation into a poultry slaughterhouse supplying Gordon Food Service, the largest privately held food distributor in North America, revealed sickening cruelty to birds: they were hastily and violently shackled upside down, dragged through an electrified vat of water, cut at their throats while still conscious, and scalded alive in hot water tanks.
It doesn’t have to be this way. Sign and share our petition demanding that Gordon Food Service follow the lead of Compass Group, Sodexo, Aramark, and the many other companies that have adopted meaningful animal welfare policies. And remember, the best way to help chickens, and all animals, is to choose delicious, plant-based foods instead.