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Victory! McDonald’s goes cage free

News Section Icon Published 09/09/2015

Hen Grass

We are pleased to report that McDonald’s will use cage-free eggs across its nearly 16,000 restaurants in the U.S. and Canada, over the next 10 years.

This move is monumental, not just in the restaurant industry but for the sheer impact it will have on those hens in the supply chain.

In numbers

  • McDonald’s purchases 2 billion eggs each year in the USA
  • Just over 4% of all the eggs in the USA are bought by McDonald’s
  • In Canada, McDonald’s use 120 million eggs annually
  • Over 7.4 million hens are set to benefit each year as a result of this commitment.

Setting an example

In countries like the US, where there is little legislation to protect farmed animals, it is often down to the big food companies to lead the way, and McDonald’s is certainly doing that!

In 2012, McDonald’s USA made headlines when they announced that by 2022 the pork used would be sourced from farmers that do not use gestation crates (sow stalls) for housing pregnant sows. Following the announcement, dozens of companies followed suit.

The outcome is nothing short of ground breaking. McDonald’s has been, and continues to be a leading light for farm animals and their welfare. It’s wonderful to see McDonald’s doing what is right for animals and responding to what their customers want.

Philip Lymbery, Compassion CEO

A Good Egg

McDonald’s has already gone cage-free in the UK and the Netherlands, and recently announced that McDonald’s New Zealand and Australia will be completely cage free by 2016 and 2017 respectively. McDonald’s UK received a Good Egg Award from us in 2008 for their commitment to good practice. The US and Canadian announcement adds two more countries to join their growing list of those with cage-free policies.

This move signals the end of the cage age for laying hens in the US and Canada.

“I am so proud of what this symbolises and to have worked with McDonald’s alongside many other partners. It just goes to show what we can achieve for animals when we work together.”

Leah Garces, Director of Compassion USA

Hitting the Headlines

Here is a small sample of the many headlines this announcement has generated:

Take action

You can help End the Cage Age for Europe’s hens by demanding EU ministers outlaw so-called enriched cages:


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