Retail

Colruyt Launches Welfare Chicken Chain With 17 Belgian Breeders

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Belgian retailer Colruyt has launched a welfare chicken chain, in cooperation with 17 domestic breeders.

Colruyt said that the initiative forms part of its commitment to meet higher animal welfare standards by 2026.

This cooperation agreement is also in line with the company's aim to work more directly with Belgian farmers, it added.

According to the group, the chain will supply Colruyt Lowest Prices supermarkets with five new SKUs, and OKay with one.

"In June, we started to introduce chicken products that meet better welfare criteria and now we are taking this one step further by setting up a completely new chain for welfare chickens," said Saskia De Block, responsible for agriculture at Colruyt Group.

Welfare Standards

Belgian breeders will raise chickens exclusively for Colruyt, and with this in mind, the group has established certain welfare criteria.

It has pledged that chickens will be reared more slowly, live longer and have 40% more space, and will be provided with perches and pecking substrates such as grains and straw bales. Daylight will be provided where possible in barns.

"We also feel that people are more concerned with the origin of the chicken on their plates, and as a breeder we want to meet that demand too," added Delphine Tasiaux of Agri Furfooz in Dinant. "For us, it's simple: less, but better."

NestBorn Technology

The 17 breeders collaborating with Colruyt have all committed to using NestBorn technology, which sees eggs laid in the barn where the chickens also hatch, ensuring better health for the animal.

Because there is no transport of newborn chickens, they experience less stress and they can immediately start their natural rhythm of eating and drinking.

© 2022 European Supermarket Magazine – your source for the latest retail news. Article by Amanda Merchán. Click subscribe to sign up to ESM: European Supermarket Magazine.

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