Success! Tesco Lotus promises better lives for mother pigs in Thailand!

29 August 2019

Tesco Lotus announces they will stop sourcing pork from farms that keep mother pigs in cages

Tesco Lotus, Thailand's largest supermarket chain, has announced that by 2027 packaged pork in all their stores will come from producers that keep pregnant pigs out of cages and in more humane group housing instead. The supermarket giant also promises all eggs will be from cage-free systems by 2028.

Image: pigs in group housing.

Supporter action creates change

The move follows over 30,000 World Animal Protection supporters taking action in Thailand and the UK as part of our Raise Pigs Right campaign. They called on Tesco Lotus to stop selling pork from farms that cruelly confine sows. We took that message straight to the top when we attended the Tesco AGM to ask the supermarket’s bosses to make an urgent commitment to improving mother pig welfare.

We’ve been working across the pork supply chain in Thailand to improve pig welfare. Other major pork producers in Thailand, including Betagro and CP Foods, are also working with us and have committed to moving to 100% group housing of pregnant pigs by 2027.

Image: pig in a group housing system.

They're not breeding machines

Three out of four of the world’s mother pigs spend much of their lives confined in steel cages no bigger than an average fridge. They are used as breeding machines, producing litter upon litter of piglets that are then reared for pork.

Currently, mother pigs in Thailand can spend almost their whole lives in cramped cages barely able to move, turn around or lie down comfortably. They resort to biting the bars of the cages that confine them in frustration. It’s makes a world of difference for them to live in groups with room to move, providing opportunities to socialise with other pigs, and to behave more naturally.

Image: mother pig in a caged system.

Ian Woodhurst, Farming Campaigns Manager for World Animal Protection UK said: “This is a welcome step forward for mother pig welfare. Our supporters in Thailand and the UK played a key part in achieving this promise, which wouldn’t have happened without them joining the campaign and taking action. We raised their concerns at the Tesco AGM and their voices have been heard. With their ongoing support, we’ll continue to engage the Tesco Group to raise pig welfare across their global operations.”
 

Currently, mother pigs in Thailand can spend almost their whole lives in cramped cages unable to move. It will make a world of difference to them to be able to live in groups, with room to move and opportunities to socialise.
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