Annual Shareholders' Meeting

2022 McDonald’s Annual Shareholders’ Meeting

May 26, 2022 – 9:00 a.m. Central Time

Vote TODAY using the WHITE proxy card and disregard any gold proxy card that may be sent to you by the Icahn Group. We encourage you to submit your vote using the WHITE proxy card as promptly as possible, even if you plan to attend the virtual Annual Shareholders Meeting. 

McDonald’s Shareholder Resources


Facts About McDonald’s 2012 Commitment on Sow Welfare:

  • McDonald’s purchases only approximately 1% of U.S.-produced pork, and does not own any sows, or produce or package pork in the United States.
  • Our 2012 commitment led to changes throughout the pork industry, with a commonly adopted approach to group housing.
  • Our 2012 commitment was shaped with input from independent veterinary scientists, along with agricultural experts and animal welfare advocates, including the Humane Society of the United States.
  • These standards allow for pregnant sows to live in a group setting for the vast majority of their lives. Confirmation of sow pregnancy typically occurs within four to six weeks after insemination. During this time, sows are housed in individual stalls for the viability of their embryos and safety of themselves, the other animals and the humans that care for them.
  • The definition of group housing for pregnant sows used by McDonald’s has been endorsed by the National Pork Producers Council, the American Association of Swine Veterinarians and the National Pork Board, whose Pork Quality Assurance guidelines outline industry standards for U.S. production.
  • Today, an estimated 30 – 35% of U.S. pork production has moved to group housing systems.
  • However, over the course of the past several years there have been market challenges for farmers and producers, such as the COVID-19 pandemic and the African Swine Fever outbreak, that have slowed progress on phasing out gestation stalls – both at our suppliers and across the entire industry.
  • Despite these challenges, over 61% of our U.S. pork supply chain has phased out the use of gestation stalls for confirmed pregnant sows, and by the end of 2022, we expect to source 85 – 90% of our U.S. pork volumes from sows not housed in gestation stalls once pregnancy is confirmed.
  • We remain committed to phasing out the use of gestation stalls for housing pregnant sows in the U.S. by the end of 2024.

For more information on McDonald’s commitments, please visit our Animal Health & Welfare page.


What Others Are Saying:

Media Coverage


Third-Party Testimony

“The definition of ‘group housing’ does not specify number of weeks for pregnancy confirmation, but typically occurs between 35 and 45 days of gestation. This timeframe coincides with the phase of pregnancy where embryos have successfully implanted into the uterine wall and fetal development is advanced enough for detection using current technology. Forming sow groups during the implantation phase of pregnancy has been shown to decrease conception rates. There is also an advantage to animal welfare by confirming pregnancy prior to forming sow groups so as to not disrupt the group’s dominance hierarchy with non-pregnant sows returning to estrus and exhibiting estrus behaviors or removal of non-pregnant sows from the established group.”  

– Sherrie Webb, Director of Animal Welfare, American Association of Swine Veterinarians

“Science shows that placing sows in breeding stalls before being confirmed pregnant is best for their well-being and provides the best outcomes early in pregnancies. We’ve seen significant progress on this issue. Calls for new commitments and shifting goal posts are not based on veterinary science."

– Dallas Hockman, National Pork Producers Council

“…Most animal welfare experts and swine veterinarians agree that limiting a pregnant sow’s movement for four to six weeks while pregnancy is confirmed is the right thing to do because it reduces the likelihood of miscarriage.”

– Charlie Arnot, Chief Executive Officer, The Center for Food Integrity

“Based on my decades of experience as a pork producer… group housing led to poor sow welfare and productivity outcomes. The sows fought in pens to establish dominance and injured each other... Due to these fights and associated stress, sows in a group pen also generally give birth to fewer piglets per litter each time that they farrow, further reducing a farm’s productivity."

– Phil Borgic, Director, National Pork Producers Council

“The stage of gestation when sows are mixed affects aggression, injuries and stress in sows and the challenges associated with aggression, injuries and stress at mixing are greater early after insemination than later.”

– Applied Animal Behaviour Science Journal, “Effects of stage of gestation at mixing on aggression, injuries and stress in sows,” 2015

 “McDonald’s has continuously advocated for farming solutions that benefit stakeholders across the industry, and we are proud to be its partner. The company has long used its leadership position to promote ESG-forward initiatives, because it knows that prioritizing progressive solutions is essential to the broader U.S. food system. Its investments in partnerships with suppliers, and meaningful support it provides to farmers, have made a tangible impact. These efforts underscore the collaboration that McDonald’s has driven throughout the industry and its commitment to the highest possible standards. With regards to sow welfare, McDonald’s has worked with a wide range of stakeholders to inform its approach and has helped its partners meet standards that are supported by veterinary science, benefit all parties and drive impact at scale. McDonald’s was one of the first to support suppliers in sourcing from producers that have adopted group-housing systems for pregnant sows – ensuring excellent animal care while enabling pork producers to meet U.S. demand and keep food affordable for consumers. Smithfield was the first U.S. pork producer to commit to group housing for sows on all company-owned farms, a transition it completed in 2017.”

– Shane Smith, President and Chief Executive Officer, Smithfield Foods


“Tyson Foods works proactively with our strategic procurement partners to implement responsible practices throughout our supply chain. McDonald’s has been a tremendous partner to us in working to focus on and continuously improve animal health and welfare outcomes. Through its leadership, McDonald’s has helped to create a future of quality, secure and sustainable food because it knows that how food is produced and where it comes from matters to our shared customers, communities, and the environment. McDonald’s has used its considerable reach and credibility to promote productive values across the industry, including its commitment to improve animal health and welfare outcomes. Tyson Foods supports the use of housing systems that promote animal health and welfare throughout our supply chain. McDonald’s is clearly a solutions-based leader with a strong commitment to providing a safe and humane environment for animals, as well as affordable food options for U.S. consumers.”

– Ken Opengart, DVM, PhD, Vice President, Animal Welfare and International Sustainability, Tyson Foods


How to Vote

Our Board unanimously recommends that you use the WHITE proxy card to vote “FOR ALL” of our Board’s Director nominees and in accordance with our Board’s recommendation on each other proposal properly presented at the meeting. Our Board urges you to disregard any materials, including any gold proxy card, that may be sent to you by the Icahn Group.

Please carefully review the proxy materials and follow the instructions below to ensure your vote is received by 10:59 p.m. Central Time on May 25, 2022:

  • Internet: Visit the website shown on your WHITE proxy card or voting instruction form. Or, if you received your proxy materials by email, simply click the WHITE “VOTE NOW” button in the email.
  • Telephone: Dial the toll-free number shown on your WHITE proxy card or voting instruction form (available 24/7).
  • Mail: If you received a WHITE proxy card or voting instruction form by mail, you may mark, date, sign and return it in the postage-paid envelope furnished for that purpose.

If you have any questions or require assistance with voting your WHITE proxy card, please contact our proxy solicitation firms at:

Innisfree M&A Incorporated
501 Madison Avenue, 20th Floor
New York, New York 10022
Shareholders: (877) 456-3463 (toll-free from the U.S. or Canada) or (412) 232-3651 (from other countries)
Banks and brokers: (212) 750-5833

Kingsdale Advisors
745 5th Avenue, Suite 500
New York, New York 10151
(855) 683-3113 (toll-free in North America)
(416) 867-2272 (outside of North America)