By Sharon Atieno

Despite global food companies making several animal welfare commitments across the world, these have not been extended to their franchises in Africa, a new report reveals.

The report published by the Business Benchmark on Farm Animal Welfare (BBFAW), an initiative backed by World Animal Protection and Compassion in World Farming, ranks 150 global food companies on farm animal welfare standards across six tiers. Tier 1 is at the top, demonstrating leadership on farm animal welfare, and Tier 6 is at the bottom, indicating that companies have yet to acknowledge animal welfare as a business issue.

Nestlé and Tesco are leading the way on farm animal welfare being ranked at tier 2 while Yum! Brands (KFC), Unilever and Domino’s Pizza Group are in tier 3. Carrefour, Restaurants Brand International (Burger King) and Subway are in Tier 4.

These brands however do not seem to be applying the policies, standards or commitments to their franchises in Africa, for instance, KFC has committed to adhere to the Better Chicken Commitment in Europe and UK but that does not seem to be the case here, similarly Carrefour has made commitments on reduction or avoidance of routine use of antibiotics and avoidance of confinement but they are yet to implement the same in Africa.

Moreover, 64% of companies assessed are in the lower three tiers. Companies such as McDonald’s, Starbucks and Subway with presence in Africa are among ten companies that have not shown any demonstrable improvement in their ranking since 2012.

Dr. Victor Yamo, Farming Campaign Manager at World Animal Protection, said: “For the last eight years, the Benchmark has been instrumental in encouraging global food businesses that have franchises in Africa to adopt new policies on farm animal welfare. However, it is clear there is a great deal more to do if farm animal welfare is to become institutionalized across the global food industry.”