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August 25, 2017

Cooperation, research, and technical support: HSI’s approach to transformational change in the food industry

Humane Society International

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HSI’s unique approach to farm animal advocacy means we are on the ground in Asia, Latin America, Europe, and South Africa, not only calling for the improved treatment of animals, but actually helping to make better welfare a reality by helping food companies and their egg and meat suppliers implement cage-free egg and crate-free pork policies.

In additional to providing companies with the latest research on farm animal welfare and best practices in animal care and housing, we provide our corporate partners with research on the egg and meat industry in a variety of markets, and organize on-the-ground trainings and events that help food retailers, as well as egg and meat producers implement animal welfare policies.

Sharing ideas

Our roundtables and panel discussions bring together major food companies as well as egg and pig producers in each region, creating a collaborative, encouraging platform for companies to share ideas and leverage their collective influence to improve farm animal welfare throughout their region. In 2017, panels and roundtables were held in Singapore, South Africa, and Mexico.

The roundtable in Singapore brought together major food service providers in Asia, including Sodexo and Compass Group, restaurant chains like Subway International, and hospitality chains such as AccorHotels, Hilton Hotels, Six Senses Resorts & Spas, and Marina Bay Sands. HSI’s animal welfare panel in South Africa featured presentations by Woolworth’s, the first retailer in South Africa to adopt a cage-free policy, and Eikenhof Poultry Farms, South Africa’s first commercial free-range egg producer; it was attended by other food retailers including Pick-n-Pay, the second largest supermarket chain in South Africa. Our roundtable in Mexico was organized together with CEMEFI, the country’s leading corporate social responsibility organization, and featured presentations by Nestlé and Toks, one of Mexico’s leading restaurant companies.

More roundtables and panels are planned for Vietnam, Chile, Colombia, and Mexico later in 2017.

Offering assistance

HSI also directly helps egg and meat producers in emerging markets access technical assistance and advice on transitioning to cage-free egg systems. In 2017 alone, we invited successful cage-free egg producers from the United States to give a talk on the technical aspects of cage-free production to egg producers in the Ukraine, and facilitated a visit for one of the largest egg companies in Argentina to large-scale cage-free egg production facility in the United States. In the past, we have arranged similar visits for egg producers from India and pig producers from South Africa, and have organized trainings for pig producers in Brazil.

Upcoming events

Additional technical workshops are planned for multiple countries in Asia and Latin America, as well as South Africa, in the coming year:

    • Brazil, November 22, 2017: Animal Welfare Corporate Roundtable
    • United Kingdom, November 24, 2017: Cage-free egg farm tour for Asian egg producers
    • Indonesia, February 21, 2018: Technical workshop for egg producers on cage-free housing
    • United States March 2018 (date TBD): Cage-free egg farm tour for egg producers in Latin America
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