One of our main corporate outreach programs is the Cage-Free Campaign that is backed by 14 German animal protection organizations which allow us to negotiate with companies on their behalf.
In the last years, we played the main role in getting food companies to abandon the sale and use of cage eggs (including egg products). The campaign has developed a momentum of its own: Many companies are deciding to go cage-free just because their peers are doing it. This makes it hard to track our influence. We decided to be very conservative in doing so, counting only companies that we are sure to have had a major (usually the only) impact on.
In 2015, we convinced 31 companies to go cage-free, in 2016, 21 of them made the switch, and in 2017 11 businesses completely phased out cage eggs due to our negotiations. The number of hens we potentially impacted through this work is very hard to estimate. While revenue numbers are usually available, getting numbers on egg usage is mainly impossible. In general, we are putting the strongest focus on the market leaders of each industry.
In 2016, we have started to take a more international approach: We worked with The Humane League (THL) to get an international cage-free commitment from food giant Mondelez and we started negotiations with all internationally active German supermarket chains. By now, all of the large chains (Aldi Nord, Aldi Süd, Lidl, Kaufland, and REWE Group) have made commitments about going cage-free in every country in which they are established. Additionally, we secured a commitment from Norma France and Spar AT (including Italy, Hungary, Slovenia and Croatia). We also joined the Open Wing Alliance and are looking forward to securing more international commitments with the members of the alliance.