Arcos Dorados, the largest operator of McDonald's restaurants in Latin America and the Caribbean, and the world's largest McDonald's franchisee on Thursday announced plans to switch to 100 percent cage-free eggs in its supply chain—a move that will spare millions of animals each year from life inside cramped cages.
N.G. Jayasimha, managing director of HSI India, stated, "We applaud Arcos Dorados for its dedication to improving the lives of farm animals, and we applaud its decision to switch to exclusively cage-free eggs. We hope Humane Society International's work with Arcos Dorados in Latin America will inspire operators and other major food companies to ensure a better future for farm animals in India too. Arcos Dorados' admirable move makes clear that egg production's future is cage-free not just in developed countries but also in developing countries and we look forward to working with the industry in India on this."
In Latin America, like India, most egg-laying hens are confined in wire battery cages, where each hen has about the space of an A4 sheet of paper to spend her whole life. Battery cages are among the cruelest factory-farming invention. HSI has documented the suffering caused by the extreme overcrowding in these wire contraptions, where birds are confined to cages so small and tight, they cannot even flap their wings.
The cage-free egg movement has quickly spread throughout the world and a growing number of food companies are adopting cage-free egg purchasing policies. More than 200 companies have committed to cage-free egg supply chains in the U.S.