Burger King, Domino's NL leave factory farms behind

Burger King, Stegeman, Domino's Pizza, Olvarit, HANOS and Mora are going to stop factory pig meat, they tell Wakker Dier. 

They will opt instead for pork with one star Living Better from Animal protection, or they will make sure their pigs are kept according to ethical well-being norms. With this, the companies are adding to a new pig campaign, with which Wakker Dier wants to improve the well-being of Dutch factory pigs who spend their lives in cramped, bare cages, the website writes.

Supermarkets are also getting involved, and think that factory pigs are living well below standard. Some supermarkets will sell fresh meat with one star from Living Better from 2015 on.

Wakker Dier wants to use this campaign to put an end to the Dutch sale of pork without well-being inspection mark, and encourages companies to follow the good example of supermarkets.

Burger King will be the first company to do so, on the 1st of April this year. Stegeman, Olvarit and HANOS will follow next year, and Mora in 2016.

According to the Wakker Dier website, these factory pigs spend their entire lives inside, on cement floors covered in excrement. Almost 50 percent of the pigs develop breathing problems due to poor air quality. Stress from being cramped in a small space, unable to practice natural behavior causes stomach ulcers.

Pigs are intelligent and playful animals, which makes them frustrated being in a cage, so much so that they start biting each other in the tail. To counter this, the tails are chopped off with a piping hot knife while the animal is not sedated, when the pig is just a few days old.

In January, Wakker Dier launched a country-wide campaign for better lives for pigs. They want to reach a minimum requirement of one star from Living Better for pork in Dutch shops. "This is a small, but important step for the millions of pigs in our country", the website writes.

Pigs with one star get 25 percent more room and more diversion material. Supermarkets have already taken this step. All supermarkets in the Netherlands, as well as Makro, will only sell one star Living Better pork from 2015. Albert Heijn and DEEN are already doing this.

Wakker Dier will then bring attention to two or three star Living Better pork. This meat comes from pigs that live on straw, can go outside and can move and play freely. They also get to keep their curly tails.