Chicken Matters to KFC (the clue is in the name). Chicken is what we are, what we do.
Better Chicken Commitment
It’s all happening at KFC… we’ve signed up to the Better Chicken Commitment – with six ambitious goals for our farms and suppliers to meet, to help transform chicken’s lives for the better.
Top of the pecking order
We’ve set ourselves a challenge. And it’s a big one.
Put KFC at the forefront of transparency and openness on chicken welfare.
So… the first step in tackling this has been all about getting a clear understanding of where we stand now. Our policy and our Western European Sourcing Code of Practice clearly set out our robust welfare standards – but understanding any variations in performance across our supply chain is trickier than you might think.
Especially given we source our chicken from over 2,000 farms.
Over the last 12 months, it’s been all go at Colonel HQ – as we’ve been busily building some big, bold, brand new welfare data software. The state-of-the-art system collects data from all of our suppliers on a whole host of key chicken welfare metrics. All the important stuff – like flocking density, average time spent in the barn, the environmental enrichment available (things like perches and pecking objects), plus many other important measures relating to the health of our chickens.
Getting the system up and running has been a huge job. No small undertaking. A feat of hen-durance (sorry). But we believe it’s well worth it. The software offers us best in class transparency of our supply chain – meaning we can literally see what’s going on in any given farm at any given time. We’ll still continue running independent audits, but the new software supports this by helping us see which suppliers are doing well… as well as those who are performing less well. That’s going to help us drive up standards as we can work to improve those farms who are not where we want them to be.
By gathering this data and committing to reporting it publicly – both the good and the bad – we reckon we can raise welfare standards, not just across our farms but whole poultry industry. Not bad.
Where We're At
These are exciting times for us – but it’s only been possible thanks to the partnerships we’re forged along the way. Speaking to leading NGOs like Compassion in World Farming, World Animal Protection and the Humane Slaughter Association over the years has helped shape both our policy and this ambitious new software tool. Poultry welfare is an incredibly complex issue to tackle, so we’re really grateful to them for their ongoing insight, expertise and support.
“World Animal Protection and KFC have agreed to work together to improve the welfare of chickens in the company and across the poultry industry. WAP will help KFC implement a welfare programme that aims to deliver better lives for millions of chickens.”
So – after all that work, we can’t wait to get the new software live, and the plan is that we’ll be publishing all our detailed data publicly by the end of the year.
But we thought it was too good to keep to ourselves… so in the meantime, we wanted to publish a quick summary. This shows the results of the analysis of our historical data from 2018 that we’ve been using to build the software.
We know we’re on a journey and there’s still plenty of work to be done – but we’re really pleased there’s been some recognition of where we’ve got to so far.
Our parent company Yum! moved up two tiers in the 2019 Business Benchmark on Farm Animal Welfare Report (or BBFAW for short). It’s a leading measure of how companies are performing on farm animal welfare globally.
Moving up two tiers in a year is a reflection of the hard work done by teams across the world – but we’re very proud of the role KFC in the UK & Ireland has played in helping set the bar within Yum!
“We’re encouraged to see Yum! Brands rise 2 tiers in the BBFAW, into Tier 3. This is largely due to their improved published data on Governance and Management of welfare within their brands, and their regional policies and reporting on cage free egg sourcing and antibiotic reduction in meat chickens.” Dr Tracey Jones, CIWF.
Keep your eyes peeled… later in the year, we’ll be sharing our first set of real-time data.
Our big ambition is that by sharing this with NGOs and reporting these results publicly, we can provide the data needed to drive improvements across the supply chain.
We know talk is cheep (sorry again) – but we have big ambitions. Working in collaboration with peers, competitors, farmers and NGOs, we hope we can drive progress, raise standards further and bring about change that our industry and customers can be proud of.