CINCINNATI — After consulting with animal welfare experts, Kroger  has asked its pork suppliers to speed up their transition to gestation-crate free housing for sows, the retailer announced on Monday.
“Kroger believes that a gestation crate-free environment is more humane and that the pork industry should work toward gestation crate-free housing for pregnant sows,” Kroger said in a news release, noting the transition is already occurring in the Kroger supply chain and will take many years to complete.
The Humane Society of the United States released a statement supporting Kroger’s efforts. “Kroger’s has taken a very important step for animal welfare in declaring that the pork industry must find an exit strategy for its use of gestation crates,” said Wayne Pacelle, HSUS president and CEO. “American consumers believe that all animals deserve humane treatment, and they think it’s wrong for producers to immobilize pigs in small crates for months and even years.”
Kroger joins retailers such as Safeway, McDonald’s, Burger King, Denny’s, and Wendy’s, in making announcements encouraging suppliers to move to gestation crate free housing.