UK food producer, Cranswick, and Swiss retail cooperative, Migros, join Coop Switzerland, Marks & Spencer, Noble Foods and Waitrose in attaining the highest marks for their management and reporting on farm animal welfare in the latest Business Benchmark on Farm Animal Welfare (BBFAW) report, published today (23 January, 2017) in New York.
Now in its fifth year, the BBFAW provides an annual review of how 99 of the world’s leading food companies are managing risks and opportunities associated with farm animal welfare.
The report, which is compiled in collaboration with leading animal welfare organisations Compassion in World Farming, World Animal Protection and investment firm, Coller Capital, reveals that companies are paying increased attention to farm animal welfare within their supply chains.
- 99 companies were included in the 2016 assessment; 12 more than in 2015
- 26 of the 99 companies benchmarked have moved up at least one tier in the league table since 2015
- 73% of companies now have published farm animal welfare policies (compared to just 46% in 2012)
- 65% of companies have published targets on farm animal welfare (up from 26% in 2012)
- 35 retailers and wholesalers were benchmarked with 10 companies moving up at least one tier in the league table
- 28 food service/catering businesses were benchmarked with 5 moving up at least one tier in the league table
- 36 producers and manufacturers were benchmarked with 11 moving up at least one tier in the league table
Thirteen companies occupy leadership positions in the Benchmark’s top two tiers. These companies demonstrate strong commitments to farm animal welfare and have established management systems and processes. They include Coop Group (Switzerland), Cranswick, Marks & Spencer, Migros, Noble Foods and Waitrose in Tier 1, and BRF, Cargill, Co-op (UK), Greggs, McDonald’s, Tesco and Unilever in Tier 2.
Reflecting on these findings, BBFAW Executive Director, Nicky Amos, said: “With 26 companies moving up at least one tier since 2015, there is a clear indication that the food industry is finally starting to treat farm animal welfare as an important business issue”.
“Despite this progress, 42 of the 99 companies (including Restaurant Brands International, Domino’s Pizza Group Plc and Starbucks Corporation) appear in Tiers 5 and 6, which demonstrates that there is still much work to be done to even get farm animal welfare on the business agenda of many large global food companies.”
The report also highlights the important role being played by institutional investors in driving improvements in practice and process across the food industry.
BBFAW Advisor, Rory Sullivan, commented: “The Benchmark shows that investors are key agents of change. They are sending a clear signal to companies that they expect food companies to effectively manage the systemic risks and opportunities posed by farm animal welfare, and it is clear that companies are responding to these expectations”.
Compassion in World Farming’s CEO, Philip Lymbery added: “We have witnessed some monumental market shifts for animal welfare since the last BBFAW report. Stakeholders and investors are pushing this progress forwards, reflecting the wishes of the vast majority of consumers today. It is increasingly clear that this is an issue which cannot be ignored by companies and we congratulate those that are moving up the ranking and driving progress in animal welfare across the food industry.”
To find out more visit www.bbfaw.com
Compassion's involvement in the BBFAW is kindly supported by the Esmée Fairbairn Foundation.