Jeff Lyons is the Senior Vice President of Merchandising, Fresh Food at Costco, one of the largest retailer chains in the US. Paul has been with the company for over 20 years.
Most importantly, as a leader at Costco, Jeff has the power and responsibility to end the horrific animal abuse that was recently exposed in Costco’s supply chain.
For Costco, animal cruelty is standard practice. In early February, The New York Times broke an undercover investigation from Mercy For Animals, exposing the horrible conditions on one of the farms that supplies Costco with chicken. The investigation found piles of dying animals, extreme overcrowding, floors covered in waste, and chickens with chemical burns—it couldn’t have been any worse. And yet, Costco’s response was that these conditions reflected “normal and uneventful activity.” In other words, these cruelties are acceptable under Costco’s standards.
Animals and consumers deserve better. In Costco’s supply chain, chickens are bred to grow so large, so quickly, that they suffer pain and can hardly even stand. Some even die prematurely from heart attacks or other health issues as a result of their excessive growth. Life for these chickens is one nightmare after another. For too long, customers have been lied to about the type of care and treatment that Costco claims it gives to animals on its watch.
Consumers care about where their food comes from and are increasingly concerned about animal welfare. No person wants to see animals be treated so poorly, and companies are taking notice. Over 200 food brands ranging from Burger King to Whole Foods to General Mills have all adopted comprehensive chicken welfare standards, such as the Better Chicken Commitment, that abolish some of the very practices that were exposed in this investigation into Costco’s supply chain. What is taking Costco so long?
It’s time for Jeff Lyons and Costco to put an end to this animal abuse.
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