Animal Welfare Statement
Popeyes Louisiana Kitchen is committed to the humane treatment of chickens provided to the restaurants of our system. To uphold this commitment and fulfill our quality standards, we require our suppliers to provide us assurances that they abide by animal welfare guidelines as set forth by the National Chicken Council (NCC), or similar guidelines, which are intended to assure the humane treatment of animals and to promote the production of quality products.
Popeyes is not directly involved in the raising, transportation or processing of chickens. The Company’s role is to work closely with direct suppliers of chicken. In that regard, we utilize only chicken suppliers that meet or exceed industry guidelines to ensure the ethical treatment of animals. We continually monitor our suppliers to ensure they adhere to these guidelines, and we work with the Food Marketing Institute and National Council of Chain Restaurants in their ongoing review of these guidelines.
Further, Popeyes requests that all of its poultry suppliers undergo animal welfare audits in accordance with the audit program recommended by the NCC, the association representing most of the vertically integrated broiler producer-processors, or a program that incorporates the key elements of that program. Popeyes currently prefers the NCC audit program standards.
Popeyes is in close contact with our chicken suppliers, who are actively reviewing and evaluating new and improved technologies and methods of poultry production, including Controlled Atmosphere Killing (CAK). The evaluations consider a number of factors, including: animal welfare, scientific research and studies, production methods used commercially and internationally, food safety, product quality, environmental factors, expected costs and potential benefits. The Company will continue to monitor emerging technologies related to improving animal welfare and product quality, including CAK. As of this date, however, there is very limited domestic use of CAK.
Popeyes is encouraging its suppliers to evaluate the potential of alternative methods of poultry production that may provide commercially practical improvements to animal welfare and product quality, including the continued analysis of CAK. We also are encouraging our suppliers to continuously review potential improvements to their current production processes. To further encourage these activities, the Company will give purchasing preferences to approved suppliers who use or switch to CAK systems, with the understanding that our stringent product quality and value requirements will always be maintained.
Popeyes will continue to uphold the industry guidelines set by our national trade association, and require our suppliers do the same. We respect and care about our customers’ concerns about the humane treatment of animals and will continue to be a leader in our industry’s approach to these concerns.