After a months-long Humane Society of the United States campaign— involving full-page newspaper ads, television commercials, dedicated social media efforts promoting our CagedForPublix website, and more—Publix has just announced a timeline for going 100 percent cage-free.
Publix is the country’s fifth-largest grocery chain, and this marks the last of the top 25 grocery companies to announce a cage-free timeline. It represents what could be a final nail in the coffin for the long era of cage confinement of hens.
This movement has been an unstoppable force. It was less than a year ago when McDonald’s announced that it will eliminate eggs from caged chickens. A cascade of announcements followed, with every big brand, from Walmart to Costco, Denny’s to IHOP, Kraft Heinz to Nestle, and virtually every other major egg buyer, committing to a cage-free future.
But not Publix—until today.
Congratulations to our staff and all of The HSUS members who took action to move Publix in the right direction. And of course, other groups also pushed Publix toward this announcement, including Compassion in World Farming, Mercy for Animals, The Humane League, and Change.org.
And if this wasn’t big enough, in another major announcement, Hillandale Farms also just committed to going 100 percent cage-free for all its operations, with the company to move four million birds into cage-free environments within a year’s time (as much as 20 percent of total production for the company, and it will build from there). Hillandale is a major supplier into Massachusetts (where we’re waging a pathbreaking ballot measure to eliminate the sale of products coming from cruelly-confined farm animals), and was the subject of a recent HSUS undercover investigation.
This caps a big week for farm animals, with the Obama administration finalizing a rule to ban the slaughter of downer veal calves, and new federal legislation introduced in Congress to stop abuses of meat and egg industry checkoff programs. While our fight continues for farm animals—and we certainly have a long way to go—today, let’s take a moment to celebrate the progress we’ve made.