PLEASANTON, Calif. and WASHINGTON, May 7, 2012 /PRNewswire/ -- Safeway Inc. (NYSE: SWY) announced today that it will begin formulating plans to have a gestation stall-free supply chain.
Gestation stalls have been criticized in recent years due to animal welfare concerns, and Safeway has been working to address the issue. Over the last several years, the company has substantially increased the quantity of pork it buys from producers that have made commitments to decreasing gestation stalls in their breeding facilities.
"It is Safeway's goal to have a gestation stall-free supply chain," said Safeway vice president of public affairs Brian Dowling. "With that in mind, the company is formulating plans to determine how it can reach that goal."
The Humane Society of the United States supports the move.
"Safeway's decision to move away from gestation crates is welcome and encouraging news," said Wayne Pacelle, president and CEO of The HSUS. "Given the scope and quantity of pork products sold by Safeway, this announcement is an important step in addressing animal welfare in the company's supply chain."
Safeway's move is also supported by the positive steps several major pork producers have made in recent years to move away from gestation stalls. As well, McDonald's, Burger King and Wendy's, along with Compass Group, the nation's largest foodservice company, have recently announced moves toward gestation stall-free supply chains.
"Our company supports the efforts of our suppliers who have committed to reductions in their use of gestation stalls," added Dowling.
About Safeway Inc. Safeway Inc. is a Fortune 100 company and one of the largest food and drug retailers in North America based on sales. The company operates 1,678 stores in the United States and western Canada and had annual sales of $43.6 billion in 2011. On the web at safeway.com.
About The Humane Society of the United States The Humane Society of the United States is the nation's largest animal protection organization — backed by 11 million Americans, or one of every 28. For more than a half-century, The HSUS has been fighting for the protection of all animals through advocacy, education and hands-on programs. Celebrating animals and confronting cruelty — On the web at humanesociety.org.
SOURCE Safeway Inc.