We see great prospects in bringing our campaigns to other countries. After establishing a foundation in Poland in 2017, we are now considering expansion to Switzerland and Hungary.
Our Polish foundation Fundacja Alberta Schweitzera is primarily responsible for corporate outreach – in other words, entering into negotiations and dialogue with food industry companies with a view to raising animal welfare standards in the supply chain as well as expanding and improving vegan product ranges. The primary, initial goal of our animal welfare team is to end the practice of keeping laying hens in cages. Our team in Poland is also responsible for establishing a Polish version of the Vegan Taste Week.
The beginning of the end of cage-egg products
Our team in Poland – in some cases in collaboration with the Polish animal welfare organisation Otwarte Klatki – has achieved successes on an almost weekly basis: Four supermarket chains (PHU Topaz, Arhelan, Polomarket, Żabka) and one wholesaler (Eurocash) have made a public commitment to switch to cage-free eggs by 2025 at the latest. In addition, Lubella – Poland’s biggest pasta manufacturer – and pasta producer Makarony Czanieckie as well as the restaurant chain Baltona will be discontinuing cages eggs from 2025 at the latest. Our Polish team is already in contact with more than 70 other companies.
The deadlines envisaged for making the switch to cage-free eggs may seem long, but alternative farming practices are not very widespread in Poland, meaning that the vast majority of eggs are still the product of battery farms.
Conflicts with companies
Sometimes, communications with companies don’t always go quite so smoothly. One Polish company recently got its lawyer to threaten a lawsuit against the Fundacja Alberta Schweitzera if it writes anything about the company and does not immediately desist from contacting it. But this company, too, eventually discovered that its attempt at intimidation was ultimately fruitless. On our Polish website, we named this company as one that we believe uses cage eggs. The company’s response was swift, announcing that it would no longer be using cage eggs.
Vegan Taste Week
The Polish version of the website and the Vegan Taste Week online programme finally went live in April 2018 under the name Tydzień na Weganie (vegan week).