IKEA takes important steps towards a more sustainable chicken supply chain including significant milestones for better chicken welfare

During spring 2021 the majority of the IKEA stores will start to offer chicken that lives up to the first important milestones defined in the IKEA Better Chicken Program.  That includes all IKEA stores in China and majority of the stores in Europe and North America. The rest of the IKEA stores will follow in 2022.

IKEA is working towards supporting more sustainable animal agriculture, through the IKEA food Better Programmes. The Better Programmes frame the IKEA food global vision for more sustainable animal agriculture for all major species in the IKEA food supply chain.

Together with our selected suppliers we will have secured the implementation end of 2020 for the majority of the requirements for the Better Chicken programme for about 80% of the IKEA stores in Europe as well as all IKEA stores in China. North America will follow in early 2021. That means that in spring 2021 chicken sourced according to those requirements will be available for customers for the majority of the IKEA stores. The remaining stores will follow approximately a year later.

“We are very proud that together with our suppliers we will reach those milestones that are not only important steps in improving chicken welfare in our own supply chain but also contribute to move the topic of more sustainable animal agriculture forward within the whole industry.”, says Sharla Halvorsson, Sustainability & Health Manager for the global IKEA food business.

More space per bird; a manure management plan to avoid environmental pollution; the provision of environmental enrichment to allow birds to express natural behaviour; responsible antibiotics use; ensuring animal feed doesn’t contribute to deforestation; and reporting on animal welfare metrics are some key aspects of what will be implemented as a part of the first milestones for the Better Chicken programme.

“We are on a journey and there are a lot of learnings along the way and we need to take those learnings and readjust our plans accordingly. What is important is that we are fully committed to securing better chicken welfare in all our markets and that we will continue the work together with our suppliers and implement the remaining requirements for all chicken in our supply chain by end of 2025 in alignment with our ambition for more sustainable chicken production.” Sharla says.

At IKEA we continue to work towards the goal that by end of 2025 sourcing of the major species in our food supply chain will be compliant with The IKEA Food Better programs.  We are happy to be able to share the next important steps on that journey and to publish the requirements and a high-level roadmap for the IKEA Food Better Pig programme.

The public health and environmental management principles for Better Pig remain the same as with the Better Chicken programme—focusing on responsible antibiotics use; non-deforestation feed; and manure management while the animal welfare principles focus on 

better space; better opportunities for behavioural expression; and moving away from painful procedures among other requirements. 

Since June 2020 IKEA is also an invited member of the Aquaculture Stewardship Council (ASC) technical working group on animal welfare where we will work together with industry, researchers and ASC to include specific animal welfare indicators in their global standard for responsible aquaculture for the first time.

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