London, 1 March 2021 - After the successful launch of the Atlas Challenge which ranked Food Delivery services and the food producers in 2020, the global animal welfare organisation FOUR PAWS continues to benchmark businesses in the food industry on their strategies of meat reduction*. The overall results of the big players were sobering: The likes of McDonald's, Burger King, Domino’s Pizza, and Subway- amongst others - show strong development potential, but areas of improvement still needed. But so far only one brand dean&david (a brand available in the DACH region) not only scored the highest, but are the first to commit to sustainable business practices, which promote meat and fish reduction and an increase of plant-based food. This not only contributes to a reduction of animals being exploited in many current agricultural systems, but also helps decrease the negative impact on climate change.
The FOUR PAWS Atlas challenge ranking targeted a total of 43 fast-food chains in Germany, Austria, Switzerland and the United Kingdom and evaluated the publicly available CSR reports, product portfolio, marketing and promotional tactics towards plant-based food and meat and fish offerings, as well as their future progress and commitment. The majority of the assessed fast-food chains ended up in the ‘Average’ category, and only five received a rating of ‘good’; KFC (UK), LEON (UK), Pret A Manger (UK), Pizza Hut (UK) and dean&david (DACH region). Eight fell into the ‘low’ category; Domino’s Pizza (Austria), Call a pizza (Germany), Burgerista (Austria), Pizza Mann (Austria), Türkis (Austria), Telepizza (Switzerland), Sam’s Pizza Land (Switzerland) and Wienerwald (Austria).
Sonja Svensek, head of the Nutrition department at FOUR PAWS, is pleased with the commitment made by dean&david and urges the rest to take responsibility too. “Animal and environmentally friendly foods are becoming more popular around the world, and consumers are demanding greater transparency on the animal welfare, environmental and health implications of the food they buy. When chains not only expand their plant-based food offering but also commit towards strategies on meat reduction, it sets a positive example to the rest of the food sector that change is not only possible, measurable, and profitable, but very much needed at a time when animal welfare, the climate crisis and the global pandemic are a top focus of current affairs.“
The FOUR PAWS Atlas Challenge
As part of the FOUR PAWS Atlas Challenge, the food industry is urged to commit to reducing their offering of meat and fish products and increasing their plant-based portfolio as part of the animal welfare and environmental protection in their CSR strategies. This is intended to reduce the excessive production and consumption of animal-based foods and to stand up against the industrial farming of animals. FOUR PAWS acknowledges that animal welfare, human health and environmental protection are deeply connected (One Welfare concept). Over the weekend news also broke that Beyond Meat has partnered with McDonalds and Yum! Brands, marking yet another clear signal that plant-based options are growing in importance for consumers and big brands.
Findings of the recent benchmarking can be found here.