Humane Society International / Europe


ROME—The leading Italian airline, ITA Airways, proudly announces its support of the campaign #NotInMyWorld of the global animal protection charity Humane Society International/Europe. The airline has adopted a new corporate policy that prohibits the transportation of hunting trophies on all company flights, both as cargo and as passenger baggage. This stands as a significant testament to the Company’s commitment to wildlife conservation, as well as a substantial contribution to ending trophy hunting and fostering business practices that acknowledge the global community’s responsibility for biodiversity protection.

Hundreds of thousands of animals globally, including endangered and threatened species, are killed by trophy hunters for amusement and boasting, contributing to the decline of wild populations, conservation challenges, and inhumane practices. Unlike subsistence hunting, the primary motivation for those engaged in this activity is to kill animals for competition and entertainment, targeting rare or highly sought-after animals for their physical characteristics (thick manes, long tusks, overall size, etc.) and turning them into trophies for display to showcase success in hunting. Considering that a significant number of trophy hunters who book overseas hunting trips intend to transport their macabre souvenirs back home, the transportation sector plays a key role in facilitating this ethically questionable and harmful industry.

On a national level, ITA Airways’ commitment holds particular significance since Italy ranks among the primary importers of hunting trophies in Europe. Between 2014 and 2021, 442 hunting trophies from mammals protected under CITES (Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species) were imported, including hippos, rhinos, elephants, and lions. These data reveal the country’s active involvement in the trophy hunting industry, despite a survey indicating that 86% of Italians oppose this practice, with 74% supporting a legislative ban on trophy imports.

By joining the campaign, ITA Airways has taken several measures including:

  • Addition of hunting trophies to the list of prohibited items: ITA Airways has expanded the list of prohibited items for transportation in both passenger baggage and cargo, expressly including hunting trophies. This clear prohibition ensures that such items are not accepted on ITA Airways flights.
  • Online publication of the policy: The hunting trophy policy has been published on the ITA Airways’ official website, providing transparency and accessibility to the new directives. This step reflects the Company’s commitment to open and responsible communication.
  • Update of operational manuals for cargo and ground procedures: ITA Airways has reviewed and updated its operations manuals, ensuring that the new provisions regarding hunting trophies are fully integrated into cargo procedures and ground operations.
  • Dissemination of the policy to staff, hubs, and suppliers: The new policy has been disseminated at all levels of the Company, including flight and ground staff, as well as suppliers and hubs where the airline operates. This dissemination ensures full understanding and adherence to the new provisions regarding hunting trophies.

Giovanna Di Vito, ITA Airways’ chief program office, ESG & Customer Operations, emphasizes “Our firm support for Humane Society International/Europe’s campaign to stop the import of hunting trophies into Italy and Europe reflects ITA Airways’ ongoing commitment to the planet, our country, and communities. Our Company’s new policy, which formalizes a ban on the carriage of hunting trophies on its flights, is a concrete action, our contribution to the protection of wildlife and the promotion of that protection. Indeed, we believe that companies have a key role in supporting and spreading ethical practices that represent real progress toward a more responsible and sustainable future.”

Martina Pluda, director of Humane Society International/Europe in Italy, states: “ITA Airways’ support to our campaign and their new policy represent a highly significant contribution to the goal of ending cruel trophy hunting. In fact, the corporate sector also plays a huge role in the collective action necessary to protect threatened wildlife globally. With HSI/Europe’s #NotInMyWorld campaign, we continue to strengthen our commitment to the preservation of endangered animal species and flora and for the introduction of bans on import, export and re-export of hunting trophies from protected animals in Italy and Europe.”

In addition to ITA Airways, an increasing number of airlines, cargo operators, and transport companies worldwide have adopted corporate policies against the transportation of hunting trophies. Please visit for an overview of all transport companies.

Visit  the new ITA Airways corporate policy 


Media contact:

  • HSI/Europe: Eva-Maria Heinen, communications & PR manager for HSI in Italy and Germany:; 3338608589
  • ITA Airways: Pietro Caldaroni, Head of Communication and Institutional relations;

Humane Society International / Europe

Thomas Szacka-Marier for HSI

BRUSSELS―With just a week to go before the European Commission is due to deliver its formal response to the European Citizens’ Initiative petition for an EU-wide fur farming ban, animal protection organizations, members of the Fur Free Alliance and MEPs gathered opposite the European Parliament to highlight the suffering of animals exploited for fur fashion.  More than 1.5 million EU citizens signed the ECI petition for a Fur Free Europe which could end the suffering of 10 million foxes, raccoon dogs, mink and chinchilla on EU fur farms each year.

Campaigners from Humane Society International/Europe, Oikeutta eläimille and Otwarte Klatki, Gaia and Tu Abrigo Su Vida wore body screens broadcasting footage recently obtained from undercover investigations on fur farms in six Member States, namely Finland, Poland, Denmark, Spain, Latvia and Lithuania. The disturbing footage exposes the harsh realities of intensively confining wild species on fur factory farms, and shows mink and foxes in small, wire cages, enduring horrifying injuries, maggot infested wounds and painful infections.

Dr Joanna Swabe, senior director of public affairs for Humane Society International/Europe, said: “This new footage showing mink, foxes and raccoon dogs suffering from the most horrific injuries and displaying stereotypical behaviours, confirms just how poor animal welfare standards are on Europe’s remaining fur farms. Despite fur industry claims of improved welfare on fur farms, the truth is there is precious little evidence that anything has really changed since the fur farm investigations of the 1980s. Animal suffering is endemic within fur farming and the only ethical solution, which also satisfies the demands of a majority of EU citizens, is to ban fur farming altogether. The European Commission must now take action to deliver a legislative proposal to prohibit fur farming at an EU level.”

Kristo Muurimaa, campaigns director at Finnish animal group Oikeutta eläimille, added: “Over the past decade, I have visited dozens of fur farms in Finland and elsewhere in the world, and the one common factor is the appalling welfare conditions under which the animals are standardly kept. It is extremely common to see abnormal behaviours, evidence of fighting, untreated injuries and even instances of cannibalism. I’ve seen these poor conditions on fur farms certified as complying with the industry’s voluntary animal welfare standards, demonstrating that this certification is not worth the paper it is written on. It is quite simply impossible to safeguard or guarantee the welfare of animals intensively bred for fur.”

Karolina Pelka, investigations specialist at Otwarte Klatki in Poland, said: “Given the conditions under which animals on fur farms are intensively kept, bred and killed, it is impossible to meet their complex welfare needs. Let it be clear. Any attempt to develop EU animal welfare standards for fur animals, which is based on the existing caged housing system, cannot deliver meaningful welfare improvements for these animals. Moreover, it would be an insult to the more than 1.5 million EU citizens who signed the ECI calling for a Fur Free Europe. They will be satisfied by nothing less than an EU-wide ban on fur farming.”

“In this day and age, it is reprehensible that we are still keeping and killing animals solely for their fur. This is a cruel and unnecessary practice, which—as we have seen in recent years with outbreaks of the SARS-CoV-2 and HPAI [highly pathogenic avian influenza] viruses on fur farms—also poses a serious threat to public health. The fur industry is already in serious decline throughout Europe, consumers, retailers and fashion designers have increasingly been turning their backs on fur and fur production has been prohibited in many Member States. So let us finally end this cruel business by introducing an EU-wide ban on fur farming. The industry only exists to supply the frivolous fashion industry with luxury products that no-one actually needs. It is high time that the Commission listens to EU citizens and delivers an EU ban on fur farming,” says Tilly Metz MEP (Greens/EFA) and President of the European Parliament’s Intergroup on the Welfare and Conservation of Animals.

Find pictures of the event and of MEPs supporting a ban on fur farming.


Media contact: Cassie Bodin-Duval, international media relations coordinator,

The distiller joins the movement to eliminate caged confinement in Europe

Humane Society International / Europe

David Paul Morris for HSUS

BRUSSELS—De Kuyper Royal Distillers has become one of the first distillers globally to announce a commitment for the responsible sourcing of eggs. As early as 2011, the Dutch manufacturer of distilled spirits and liqueurs, which uses approximately 19 million eggs annually, has embarked on a mission to source exclusively cage-free eggs. By 2030, the company aims to transition to sourcing free-range eggs throughout its entire supply chain. De Kuyper’s new animal welfare policy was developed in cooperation with Humane Society International/Europe.

De Kuyper’s commitment to source eggs exclusively from cage-free production systems, along with its aspirations to transition to free-range production systems, sends a strong signal to both policymakers and producers by demonstrating a growing appetite and increasing market demand for responsible eggs among corporate actors. With this commitment, De Kuyper Royal Distillers has joined the growing number of global consumer goods companies who have pledged to stop using eggs from caged hens, including PepsiCo, Unilever, Mondelez and Nestlé.

In 2021, following the success of the End the Cage Age European Citizens Initiative which was supported by 1.4 million EU citizens, the European Commission announced that they will deliver a proposal to end caged confinement for farmed animals. While it is uncertain when and if the Commission will deliver this proposal in the near term, the fact that increasingly more businesses are taking corporate responsibility with regard to how the eggs they use are produced, is a clear proof for support for higher animal welfare standards in Europe.

Mark de Witte, CEO at De Kuyper Royal Distillers, said: “As a company with more than 325 years of history, De Kuyper Royal Distillers has always been able to adapt to changing times and changing customer and consumer demands, and this is no different when it comes to animal welfare. As a socially responsible company, we are proud to present our first animal welfare policy and take steps towards higher animal welfare standards to become future-proof.”

De Kuyper Royal Distillers is a global market-leading producer of liqueurs and creates the traditional Dutch liqueur Advocaat. The company is one of the largest producers of egg liqueur globally and distills it for its own brands, as well as for other leading retailers in Europe.

Elise Allart, corporate engagement director for Humane Society International/Europe, said: “De Kuyper Royal Distillers has taken an important step by including animal welfare in its responsible sourcing strategy. The company sources exclusively cage-free eggs not only for its liqueurs, but also for the products served in the canteens to its employees. The policy also reaffirms the long-lasting commitment of De Kuyper to not test its products on animals, or to implement protecting practices that involve any form of cruelty to animals, for instance in their marketing activities.”

The majority of hens in the global egg industry are confined to cramped battery cages, where they spend their entire life on a surface not bigger than an A4 sheet of paper. In response to consumer demands and serious concerns about animal welfare, barren battery cages were eventually phased out in the EU by 2012. However, in 2022 43.2% of hens in the European Union are still confined to enriched cages. Cage-free and free-range systems, on the other hand, allow birds to perform their natural behaviours, such as laying eggs in nests, walking, perching, dust bathing or wing-flapping.


Media contact:

  • Humane Society International/Europe: Cassie Bodin-Duval, international media relations coordinator,
  • De Kuyper Royal Distillers: Thomas van Gaal, sustainability manager,

Courteney Cox, Ricky Gervais, Andie McDowell join with Indonesia’s Bubah Alfian, Cinta Laura Kiehl, D.J Bryant, Davina Veronica, Luna Maya, Prilly Latuconsia and more to support ending the brutal trades

Humane Society International / Indonesia


JAKARTA, Indonesia—More than 30 stars from the world of acting, fashion and music―including  Billie Eilish, Charlize Theron, Clint Eastwood, Kim Basinger, Courteney Cox, Ricky Gervais, Andie McDowell, Jeff Bridges and Zooey Deschanel―have called on President Joko Widodo in a joint letter to end Indonesia’s brutal dog and cat meat trades following the rescue of desperate animals from one of the country’s most notorious markets, Tomohon Extreme Market.

More than 130,000 dogs and countless cats annually are slaughtered in public markets across the Indonesia’s island of Sulawesi. In July this year, Mayor Caroll Senduk of the city of Tomohon in North Sulawesi province worked with animal charities Humane Society International and Animal Friends Manado Indonesia to permanently shut down the sale and slaughter of dogs and cats for human consumption at the infamous market, ending years of suffering. The charities rescued the remaining animals found alive at the market’ slaughterhouse.

In the letter to the president, the stars including Dame Judi Dench, Alicia Silverstone, Alfie Boe OBE, Leona Lewis, Daisy Fuentes, Eddie Vedder, Goran Visnjic, Kristin Bauer and others praised “those leaders throughout Indonesia who have taken action to eradicate the dog and cat meat trades in their jurisdictions, saving tens of thousands of dogs and cats every month from the cruel and dangerous trades. There are now 28 cities and regencies that have passed Directives and regulations prohibiting the trades, as well as the Special Capital Region of Jakarta, and the groundbreaking and progressive action taken by the City of Tomohon in July ending the sale and slaughter of dogs and cats, and their meat, at the nation’s most infamous market – Tomohon Extreme Market.”

They ended their letter by urging the PM to ensure “a nationwide ban is introduced so that we can soon celebrate a truly dog and cat meat-free Indonesia.”

The letter, which was also signed by some of Indonesia’s biggest mega-stars including Bubah Alfian, Cinta Laura Kiehl, D.J Bryant, Davina Veronica, Luna Maya and Prilly Latuconsia, acknowledged the fact that most people in Indonesia want to see a ban. The stars wrote: “We stand strong with the overwhelming majority of Indonesian citizens and international visitors who oppose the dog and cat meat trades and believe in protecting animals from cruelty and exploitation; and applaud  those leaders who have taken steps in prioritizing their citizens’ health and safety.”

The stars felt inspired to pen the letter after hearing about the dog and cat meat trade ban achieved at Tomohon Market by HSI and AFMI and their rescue of the last 25 dogs and three cats found alive at the slaughterhouses supplying the market. All six dog and cat traders who supplied and worked at the market signed an historic agreement to permanently end involvement in the dog and cat meat trades, which in turn disrupted the vast supply network of animal thieves and traffickers involved in their punishingly long-distance transport.

Animal cruelty at Tomohon market has been documented during exposés spanning many years, showing live dogs and cats cowering and shaking as traders yanked them one by one from their cage to bludgeon them repeatedly over the head and blow-torched them to remove their fur, sometimes while still conscious. Most recently, upsetting footage was filmed by HSI at Tomohon market in March and July this year, including rows of blowtorched dog and cat carcasses on display at market stalls.

Lola Webber, HSI’s director of campaigns to end the dog meat trade, said: “We are so grateful to these outspoken Indonesian and global stars who are using their voices to speak up for the millions of dogs and cats who endure the most horrific abuse for the meat trade. We echo their praise for those Indonesian leaders working with us to end this cruelty at and we join with them in urging President Widodo to introduce a nationwide ban.”

Frank Delano from AFMI said: “The dog and cat meat trades are not only obscenely cruel, but they also jeopardise public health through the spread of the deadly rabies virus during dog slaughter, butchery and consumption. So to see these celebrities stand with the majority of Indonesian citizens in calling for an end to this miserable trade is really encouraging.”

Karin Franken from Jakarta Animal Aid Network, a DMFI coalition founding member, said: “Indonesia is a popular tourist destination for travellers from the United States, Australia, the United Kingdom and Europe, so the celebrities who signed this letter are representing both the international and national community who want to see a dog and cat meat-free Indonesia. These poor animals have endured enough. We hope that President Widodo and provincial leaders take action to rid Indonesia of the scourge of this cruel and dangerous trade that tarnishes our reputation across the globe.”

Read the letter

Download video/photos of HSI rescuing of the last dogs and cats from Tomohon market

Download video/photos of the dog meat trade at Tomohon Extreme Market 


Media contacts:

Proposed law would extend lions' protection ban to safeguard other protected species

Humane Society International / Europe


PARIS—A cross-party bill proposal to ban the import of hunting trophies of protected species into France by Ecologist MP Sandra Regol with the support of Renaissance MP Corinne Vignon, Chair of the Assembly’s Study Group on the Condition and Welfare of Animals. According to an poll commissioned by Humane Society International/Europe, this proposed law is supported by the vast majority of French citizens, with 91% declaring themselves in favour of a ban on the import of trophies of endangered species.

France, which took measures to safeguard lions from trophy hunting in the aftermath of Cecil the lion’s death in 2015, currently grants this protection exclusively to lions. Many other protected species, including elephants, leopards and cheetahs, continue to be hunted, mounted and imported as trophies in France.

The introduction of a new legislative proposal raises hope for these animals, as the Bill would amend the Environment Code to expand the hunting trophy import ban, offering protection to a broader range of protected and endangered species. The proposed law would also prohibit the direct or indirect promotion of trophy-hunting an animal covered by the law.

Capucine Meyer, HSI/Europe consultant for the campaign on trophy hunting in France said:

“It is time for the protection status granted to lions to be extended to species that are just as threatened, if not more so, such as the polar bear, the leopard and the African elephant. France must become a leader in the protection of species and biodiversity by extending such prohibitions to other species targeted by trophy hunters. HSI/Europe would also like to congratulate Deputy Mrs. Regol and all the signatory MPs for their commitment to respecting animal life and protecting biodiversity.”

The new law proposal was co-signed by 26 MPs from the Ecologiste-NUPES, Renaissance and Démocrate (MoDem and Indépendants) groups, including Jean-Marc Zulesi, Chairman of the Sustainable Development and Town and Country Planning Committee, and Elodie Jacquier-Laforge, Vice-President of the National Assembly. It follows success in June last year, when Sandra Regol, with the support of Minister Gabriel Attal and Group Chairwoman Aurore Bergé, succeeded in getting an amendment passed in both the National Assembly and the Senate to give customs officers more resources to combat the import of illegal hunting trophies. This unprecedented vote highlighted the general support of parliamentarians and the government in the fight against the import of hunting trophies of protected species.

Milton Federici, Convergence Animaux Politique’s Head of Public Affairs, explains: “We have been working with HSI/Europe on this campaign for over a year, seeking support among parliamentarians. The tabling of this text is both the culmination of this work and the start of a democratic debate that we are calling for in the Assembly and Senate on the import of hunting trophies of endangered species. We are extremely grateful to Sandra Regol and all the other MPs who support this text for creating the conditions for this debate.”

Background Facts:

  • Trophy hunting poses a grave threat to biodiversity and ecosystem stability. It involves the killing of wild animals for the purpose of exhibiting their heads, skins or other body parts as trophies. This cruel and detrimental activity exacerbates the decline of species, endangering their survival and disrupting ecosystems.
  • Trophy hunting is not just rejected by an overwhelming majority of French and European citizens: in South Africa, for example, which is Africa’s main exporter of wildlife trophies, two out of three people questioned said they were against trophy hunting. [2] .

[1] Ifop survey for HSI/Europe conducted by online self-administered questionnaire from 13 to 14 June 2023 among a sample of 1,003 people, representative of the French population aged 18 and over.

[2] HSI/Europe (2022). “Report: Hunting – Ipsos Khayabus W1 2022” conducted by Ipsos South Africa


Media contact: Cassie Bodin-Duval, international media relations coordinator,

Humane Society International and Alianza Alimentaria hosted a webinar to guide companies towards their cage-free future.

Humane Society International / Mexico


MEXICO CITY—Humane Society International and Alianza Alimentaria held their “Successful Transition to a Cage-Free Egg Supply Chain” webinar which drew ian audience of 76 attendees from the hospitality and food industry. Experts in animal welfare and biosecurity, alongside industry leaders like Karismawhich has successfully transitioned to a 100% cage-free egg supply chainand producers such as Ovolab, Kaki, and Chak Hé, whose representatives shared best practices and success stories concerning the shift to a cage-free egg supply chain.  

The webinar focused on the challenges of transitioning to a cage-free supply chain, strategies for seamless implementation and management, the profound impact of transition on animal welfare and sustainability, and lessons gleaned from pioneering companies that have successfully embraced this shift. 

“Events like these are a clear example of Sustainable Development Goal 17: Partnerships for the Goals, where diverse stakeholders have come together to exchange knowledge and experiences of objectives that we share.”, says Angelica Vega, food policy manager for Alianza Alimentaria y Acción Climática

Arianna Torres, senior program manager for corporate policy and farm animals at HSI/Mexico, says: “Across the world, trends in the hospitality and food industry sector indicate a clear trajectory towards a cage-free future for eggs. Our webinar encourages producers and companies in Latin America to set ambitious cage-free targets with the confidence that compassionate sourcing is a practical choice for consumers, corporations, producers and animals. Encouraging better treatment of animals in the supply chain is a shared responsibility and we will push for more companies to consider following suit.” 

Humane Society International’s work to improve the welfare of animals in agriculture is both science-based and collaborative. The organization works with companies, farmers, processors, scientists and certifiers to support a transition to cage-free housing systems, and offers a wide range of support to companies including farm visits, consumer education and corporate roundtables and workshops to enhance their supply chains. 


Media contact: Laura Bravo,

Humane Society International / South Korea

CreativeNature_nl/ stock

SEOUL—Humane Society International/Korea and 346 South Korean academic and industry experts delivered a letter to the chair of National Assembly’s Health and Welfare Committee, Dong Kun Shin, urging the Korean government to pass bills promoting state-of-the-art science replacing animal testing.

With an increasing consensus among scientists recognizing the importance of providing systemic support in developing and implementing human-based non-animal methods, two bills were introduced at the National Assembly; the Act on the Promotion of Development, Dissemination and Use of Alternatives to Animal Testing Methods (PAAM Act), sponsored by Assembly member In-Soon Nam in 2020, and the Act on the Vitalization of Development, Dissemination, and Use of Alternatives to Animal Testing Methods (VAAM Act), sponsored by Assembly member Jeoung Ae Han in 2022.

Through a series of political forums to discuss these bills with authorities and wider stakeholders in the past few years, a general agreement has been established that South Korea is at a pivotal moment in advancing health and safety science without relying on animal models. To achieve this, the bills stipulate collaborative work between authorities by providing a basic plan every five years. In addition, a committee consisting of experts in alternative approaches to animal testing will be established pursuant to the Act.

One of the signatories of the letter, Professor Kyungmin Lim, at Ehwa University said: “As a researcher, I work closely with new method developers and end-users. I experience time and time again the need to have a legislation in Korea to support those scientists and a relevant network for collective efforts in developing and accepting alternative approaches to animal use.”

HSI/Korea’s director of government affairs, Borami Seo said: “There is an increasing interest in using modern technologies that are more predictive of human responses than animal models. Last May, ’Korea’s innovative strategic industry committee’ selected the cell-based human mimetic method organoid as an ‘innovative strategic technology’ and promised research and development support. We are witnessing an increasing demand for these technologies, and the PAAM Act and VAAM Act are exactly the bills that are crucial to ensure these research and development efforts lead to its regulatory uptake and industrial use in the field. Now is a critical time to pass this legislation.”


Media contact: Borami Seo

Some major fast-food companies address chicken welfare, with many to continue efforts, according to report

Humane Society International / Europe

We Animals

BRUSSELS—The first-ever evaluation of chicken welfare among 16 fast-food brands in Poland and Romania reveals that the fast-food industry in Eastern Europe is taking its first steps towards increasing the welfare of chickens used for meat. The 2023 Pecking Order reports for Poland and Romania, which were conducted by Humane Society International/Europe, evaluate prominent fast-food companies such as McDonald’s, Burger King and Subway as well as local chains including Romanian 5 to go and Polish Zahir Kebab concerning their time-bound commitments and performance-reporting on broiler chicken welfare in their supply chains. The assessment centers on indicators such as the living space allocated for each chicken, the chicken breeds employed, the use of cages, the provision of enrichments for natural behavior display, and the methods used for their slaughter. 

Poland and Romania are among the most important players in Europe’s broiler chicken industry, supplying both domestic and international markets with chicken meat products. In 2021, Poland was the largest EU producer with about 1.12 billion chickens raised and killed, whereas Romania ranked 8th with 271.7 million chickens.   

The assessments included 12 fast-food brands for each country. In both Poland and Romania, it covered Burger King, Domino’s, IKEA, KFC, McDonald’s, Pizza Hut, Starbucks and Subway. In Poland, Pasibus, Salad Story, Vapiano and Zehir Kebab were also reviewed, while in Romania the evaluation included 5 to go, PAUL, Salad Box and Spartan. The Pecking Order report’s overall results highlight that while some companies have taken steps and published their commitments to improve broiler chicken welfare, most have yet to start. Many international fast-food chains rely on their parent companies’ chicken welfare policies without declaring them on their local websites, while national fast-food chains have not introduced these welfare policies at all. 

In both countries, Subway emerges as the leader among the assessed companies with an overall score of 57% on managing and reporting on broiler chicken welfare. In Poland, Subway is followed by IKEA with 50% and Pizza Hut and Vapiano with 47%. McDonald’s and KFC received low scores of 11% and 2%, respectively, while Burger King, Domino’s, Pasibus, Salad Story, Starbucks and Zahir Kebab scored 0%. In Romania, Subway is followed by IKEA, PAUL and Pizza Hut with a score of 47%. On the flip side, KFC, 5 to go, Burger King, Domino’s, McDonald’s, Salad Box, Spartan and Starbucks received very low scores, between 2% and 0%. In Poland, as well as in Romania, Subway is the only chain that received a non-zero score in performance reporting. 

Elise Allart, corporate engagement director for HSI/Europe, says: “The vast number of animal lives impacted by the chicken industry demands that it actively champion higher standards of animal welfare. The Pecking Order doesn’t just assess the status quo; it provides actionable solutions. It’s a powerful tool for fast-food companies seeking to enhance chicken welfare and adhere to the European Chicken Commitment. We invite collaboration and prompt action to improve animal welfare in supply chains, making businesses future-proof in line with increasing consumer demands and forthcoming legislation.” 

Find photos and infographics in English, Polish and Romanian.

Facts on The Pecking Order

  • The 2023 edition of The Pecking Order is a project by World Animal Protection, together with Humane Society International, the Albert Schweitzer Stiftung, L214 and Essere Animali. A total of 69 companies were assessed covering the markets of France, Germany, Italy, Poland, Romania, and Spain. 
  • The Pecking Order is an initiative dedicated to assessing broiler chicken welfare in the fast-food industry, by evaluating the companies’ commitment to address chicken welfare throughout their supply chains, the measures they take and how they implement the requirements recommended in the European Chicken Commitment (ECC). The Pecking Order has been assessing fast-food brands since 2019. In 2023, six European markets were assessed, and Poland and Romania were included for the first time. The report offers a general presentation of the broiler chicken welfare situation in the Polish and Romanian fast-food industry and describes opportunities for improvement. 
  • Chicken welfare management across countries varies. The German and French fast-food companies have the highest average overall scores of the assessed countries, demonstrating more commitments and implementation. Polish and Romanian chains have the lowest scores, indicating that there is substantial progress needed within the countries’ fast-food industries concerning chicken welfare. 

  • Some fast-food chains are doing better than others in publishing their commitments and targets for chicken welfare. For Poland, IKEA stands out with a score of 100%, demonstrating a firm commitment to chicken welfare. The data also reveals that Subway, Pizza Hut and Vapiano have acknowledged the need to improve chicken welfare, each scoring a high 94%, positioning them as leaders in this aspect. On the opposite end of the spectrum, McDonald’s, KFC, Burger King, Domino’s, Starbucks, Pasibus, Salad Story and Zahir Kebab exhibit a lack of commitment with scores of 21% (McDonald’s), 3% (KFC) and 0% (the rest). Regarding commitments and targets in Romania, Subway, IKEA, PAUL and Pizza Hut have conceded the need for higher welfare standards for broiler chicken. Each of the companies gathers a percentage of 94%.  On the other hand KFC, Burger King, Domino’s, McDonald’s, Starbucks, 5 to go, Salad Box and Spartan show a lack of commitment, with scores between 3% (KFC) and 0% (other companies). 
  • In respect to performance and progress reporting, in both Poland and Romania, Subway is the only chain that received a non-zero score. All other assessed companies received a score of 0%. These companies did not publish any information on their websites. This indicates a significant lack of action and transparency. Without progress reporting, the public is left to assume that these companies are doing nothing to eliminate the cruelty happening to chickens in the supply chain.  


Media contact: Cassie Bodin-Duval, international media relations coordinator,

New regulations also ban import of hunting trophies containing these parts

Humane Society International / Canada

Waldo Swiegers/AP Images for HSI

OTTAWA, Ontario—The Canadian government has banned domestic trade in elephant ivory and rhino horn, as well as the import of hunting trophies containing these parts. The landmark measures fulfill a 2021 Ministerial mandate and are a critical step in protecting these iconic species. The move follows a seven-year campaign by Humane Society International/Canada and has overwhelming support from leading conservationists, animal protection groups, African nations and notable Canadians.

The African elephant population has declined by 96% over the last century, with scientists warning that they, as well as many rhinoceros species, could become extinct within the next few decades in the absence of global intervention to disincentivize poachers.

Those involved in the decision issue the following statements:

Steven Guilbeault, minister of Environment and Climate Change Canada, said: “Our government is committed to protecting, conserving and enhancing the world’s biodiversity, including reversing the global decline in elephant and rhinoceros populations. By strengthening Canada’s response to wildlife trafficking, we will enforce practical solutions that effectively address the illegal ivory trade and support species conservation. Canadians overwhelmingly support stricter controls and the Government of Canada is delivering.”

Kelly Butler, campaign manager for Humane Society International/Canada, stated: “Elephant and rhino populations have been decimated by global trade in their parts, and poaching causes considerable suffering to these incredible animals. In banning trade in elephant ivory and rhino horn, the Canadian government has shown considerable leadership and reflected the will of Canadians and the vast majority of African nations holding elephant populations. At last, Canadians can rest assured that our country is doing our part to ensure these majestic animals have a future.”

Dr. Winnie Kiiru, Kenyan biologist and leading elephant conservationist, said: “I am thrilled that Canada has enacted these urgently needed regulations in order to safeguard elephant and rhino populations. As a conservationist working on the ground in Kenya, I have seen firsthand the devastating effects of poaching and trophy hunting on African elephant and rhino populations. We need countries around the world to act now in order to protect these amazing animals, and Canada’s actions send an important message: ivory belongs to elephants.”

Dieudonné Yameogo, director of Wildlife and Game resources of Burkina Faso, stated: “Burkina Faso congratulates Canada on this historic decision. Canada follows in the footsteps of other countries, such as the USA, China, Hong Kong SAR and the EU, which have all closed or severely restricted their domestic ivory markets in recent years. This sends a very strong message to all traffickers and poachers: ivory has no market value, anywhere in the world! These measures taken by these various countries could lead to a significant drop in illegal elephant killings in all African elephant range states, and particularly in Burkina Faso.”

Bryan Adams, order of Canada recipient and one of the best-selling musicians of all time, stated: “As a long-time animal advocate, I am thrilled that Canada has listened to the overwhelming number of Canadians who demanded action to end the senseless killing of elephants and rhinos. The policies enacted by the Canadian government set a powerful precedent for countries around the world to join the fight to protect elephants and rhinos.”

Robert Bateman, renowned Canadian artist and conservationist, stated: “I have had the great privilege of observing wild African elephants and, like so many other Canadians, I am devastated by the prospect of their extinction and their ongoing suffering at the hands of humans. The survival of African elephants and rhinos hinges on the actions of the global community, and I commend Canada for enacting meaningful policies to safeguard these amazing animals for generations to come.”

The creators of The Anthropocene Project (Edward Burtynsky, Jennifer Baichwal and Nicholas de Pencier), who documented the largest elephant ivory burn in history, which took place in Kenya in 2016, stated: “The poaching of elephants for ivory—from which international criminal syndicates profit—and the ensuing decimation of African elephant populations is tragic. Witnessing Kenya’s ivory burn was a very powerful moment for all of us and a shocking reminder of the scale at which elephants are being slaughtered, day after day, year after year. We commend the Canadian government for ending its role in this terrible, destructive industry which perpetuates the devastation of elephant and rhino populations.”

Fran Duthie, president of Elephanatics, stated: “The team at Elephanatics is thrilled that regulations to ban the elephant ivory and rhino horn trade, along with the import of hunting trophies containing these parts, are to be enacted by the Canadian Government. We would like to thank all the scientists, NGOs, politicians and people who worked tirelessly to make this happen. From the petition created by the Ivory Free Canada coalition that reached over 700,000 signatures and showed overwhelming support to save elephants and rhinos, to endless advocacy, to the collaboration of like minds working together to save a species, our mission to ban the elephant ivory and rhino horn trade has come to fruition. It is a time to be grateful and to celebrate this grand achievement. We did it!”


  • As many as 25,000 elephants and 1,300 rhinos die at the hands of poachers in Africa every year.
  • In March 2021, the IUCN updated its Red List of Threatened Species and declared the African forest elephant to be Critically Endangered and the African savanna elephant to be Endangered. Black rhinos, found in Africa, are classified as Critically Endangered.
  • Canada’s top trading partners, including the United States, China and the United Kingdom, have closed their elephant ivory markets in response to declining elephant populations.
  • According to CITES data, over 450 African elephant tusks, 16 rhino horns, and an additional 81 elephant trophies and 44 rhino trophies were legally imported into Canada from 2010-2021.
  • In June of 2021, an open letter calling for an end to elephant ivory trade in Canada was signed by notable Canadians including Bryan Adams, Robert Bateman and David Suzuki.
  • The proposed regulations follow a public opinion consultation conducted by Environment and Climate Change Canada in the summer of 2021, in which Canadians and people from around the world overwhelmingly voiced their support for federal action to end Canada’s role in the elephant ivory trade.
  • According to a 2020 poll by Insights West, 94% of Canadians support an elephant ivory trade ban.
  • A public petition calling for a Canadian ban on elephant ivory trade amassed over 700,000 signatures.


Media contact: HSI/Canada: Dominique Davidson, senior communications officer:, 438-951-0350

Calls for fur import ban intensify as newly published letters reveal ban also has backing of the Scottish Government

Humane Society International / United Kingdom


LONDON—Animal protection organisation Humane Society International/UK has intensified calls for a UK fur import and sales ban following the publication of an email from former Environment Secretary George Eustice, which reveals that 96% of 30,000 respondents to the Government’s Call for Evidence on the fur market in Great Britain strongly agreed that it is wrong for animals to be killed for fur. 

An FOI request detailing correspondence between George Eustice and Mairi Gougeon, Scotland’s Cabinet Secretary for Rural Affairs, found that in December 2021 Eustice confirmed this result of the Call for Evidence and stated: “The Government will therefore take forward a ban on the import and sale of fur”. In February 2022, Gougeon confirmed in a reply that “The Scottish Ministers support, in principle, the initiative to prohibit the import and sale in Great Britain of fur to address the public moral objection to any rearing or killing of animals purely for their fur”. 

Humane Society International/UK, which leads the celebrity-backed #FurFreeBritain campaign, welcomed the news and renewed its call for the full results of the Call for Evidence to be published and for a UK fur import ban. Despite banning fur farming in 2003 on animal welfare grounds, the UK still imports and sells fur from other countries including Finland and China. HMRC records show that in 2022, the UK imported £41,970,308 of fur, which HSI/UK estimates to be equivalent to over one million animals. 

Claire Bass, senior director of campaigns and public affairs at Humane Society International/UK, said: “The Government ran a Call for Evidence on the UK fur trade in May 2021 and has been inexplicably sitting on the results ever since. Today it transpires that the evidence obtained is a slam-dunk in support of a ban, with 96% of respondents agreeing that it is wrong to kill animals for their fur. Based on this evidence, the Government confirmed that it would take forward a ban, and the Scottish Government confirmed its backing for one, and then—nothing. Nearly 30,000 people and organisations took the time to provide evidence, but over the last year Ministers haven’t shown willingness to let evidence lead progress on this policy. We urge the new Defra Secretary to release the results and then move forward with a ban. Fur is not only appalling for animals, but top British virologists have warned that fur farms are a ticking time bomb for pandemic disease risk. The UK should have no part in this cruel, unnecessary and dangerous trade.”

Defra’s Call for Evidence on the Fur Market in Great Britain was launched in May 2021 with the stated intention of using the findings to inform possible future action on the UK fur trade. Over two years on, despite repeated calls from MPs and animal protection organisations, Defra has yet to make the results publicly available. HSI/UK has submitted a further Freedom of Information request to gain access to the results. 

HSI/UK’s Fur Free Britain campaign, which calls for a UK fur import and sales ban, has gathered over 1.1 million petition signatures to date.  

Download Photo/B-roll from HSI’s Investigation on Chinese Fur Farms 


Media Contact: Sally Ivens, HSI/UK:; 07590 559299 


  • HSI/UK’s recent report on the environmental impact of the fur industry shows that fur is an unsustainable and inefficient material. 
  • In May 2023, 54 MPs wrote a letter to then Environment Secretary Thérèse Coffey, urging her department to publish its analysis of the response to the Call for Evidence, as well as to set out a policy position to deliver a ban on the import and sale of fur in Great Britain. 
  • Eighteen written questions, such as this one, asking about plans to ban fur imports were submitted to Defra by MPs in the last Parliamentary sessions. 
  • In response to a Westminster Hall debate on the import and sale of fur, held on 27 June 2023 and led by Giles Watling MP, Defra Minister Trudy Harrison said: “A summary of responses to the call for evidence, setting out the results and the next steps in this policy space, will be published very soon.” 
  • Leading British virologists Professor Wendy Barclay and Dr Thomas Peacock recently wrote an article in the scientific journal Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences (PNAS) highlighting the public health threat posed by the global fur trade, stating: “We strongly urge governments to also consider the mounting evidence suggesting that fur farming, particularly mink, be eliminated in the interest of pandemic preparedness. Fur farming should be in the same category of high-risk practices as the bushmeat trade and live animal markets. These activities all increase the likelihood of future pandemics.” 

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