The performance of major CPG companies in avoiding animal cruelty has edged upward, but still needs improvement, according to a report from animal-welfare monitors.
The Business Benchmark on Animal Welfare is an annual report that evaluates 150 major food and beverage processors, retailers and restaurant companies in terms of how they keep products from cruelly treated animals out of their supply chains. The ninth annual report says that the overall average score on its benchmarks for cruel treatment went up from 34% in 2019 to 35% in 2020.
More encouraging were some of the individual results. Corporate attitudes toward animal welfare are divided into five tiers, ranging from “takes a leadership position” to “provides limited if any evidence that it recognizes” the issue. There were 23 companies that moved up one tier, including Bimbo USA, Kraft Heinz, Mars and Unilever. On the other hand, 15 companies dropped at least one tier, among them General Mills and Perdue Farms.
Of all types of companies surveyed, manufacturers/producers scored highest, for the first time in the nine years of the report. Their overall average score increased from 35% to 38%.
Companies based in the United Kingdom scored highest, at 64%. The score for North American companies was 29%.