McDonald’s Achieves Goal of Sourcing 100% Cage-Free Eggs in the U.S.
February 06, 2024
Exciting news for breakfast fans: We’re proud to announce that McDonald’s has met its goal of sourcing 100% cage-free eggs in the U.S. by 2025, two years ahead of our original timeline. We continue to prioritize the health and welfare of the animals in our supply chain, and we’re excited to take another meaningful step in that work.
How did we get here?
The short answer: Thanks to the power of the McDonald's System working together towards a shared goal.
As a U.S. System, we purchased almost 2 billion eggs in 2023 – that’s close to six times the U.S. population! Since we made the decision in 2015 to switch to purchasing cage-free eggs in the U.S., we put action behind our commitment. This included every leg of McDonald's three-legged stool - owner/operators, suppliers and company employees – working together to support our supply chain transformation.
Quality at our core
At McDonald’s, we continue to prioritize food quality and animal welfare throughout our supply chain. So, how do cage-free eggs align with our high standards?
On a cage-free farm, hens are housed in an open environment that allows birds freedom to express their natural behaviors and includes enrichments such as perches, scratch areas and nests. Each McDonald’s-supplying egg farm in the U.S. has an attending veterinarian who helps lead training and education for the staff to help ensure a high level of care.
The people behind the eggs
Creating a supply of cage-free eggs at McDonald’s U.S. scale wouldn't have been possible without the support of Cargill and their egg producers, including Minnesota-based fourth-generation family business Forsman Farms.
“As a family, we sat down and said, 'Are we going to be able to do it?',” said Peter Forsman, Owner of Forsman Farms. “We had zero cage-free systems, and we knew this was going to be a big challenge.” As U.S.-based egg producers actioned the changes necessary to qualify as cage-free, McDonald’s and Cargill were there in lockstep to support through the transition.
We engaged animal welfare experts and academics to help egg producers build and renovate their farms and implement new technology. This included Herbruck’s Poultry Ranch, a fourth-generation family business in Michigan, operating since 1958 and supplying Cargill for the McDonald’s system for decades.
“I really can't say enough about our partnership with Cargill and McDonald's. They understand the difficulties that we have,” said Herb Herbruck, President of Herbruck's Poultry Ranch. “They want to hear about our challenges, and they want to help us through them.”
The collective actions taken by members across our U.S. System to achieve this goal are a reminder of how we live our purpose of feeding and fostering communities — by advancing the safety and the quality of our food and prioritizing animal welfare in our supply chain. Reaching this milestone is another step in the right direction.
"Our journey to move to sourcing 100% cage-free eggs in the U.S. was a huge undertaking — made uniquely possible by our owner/operators, Cargill and their egg producers, and our supply chain working together as one team," said Bob Stewart, SVP, North America Chief Supply Chain Officer for McDonald’s. “I am incredibly proud of what we achieved together and the positive impact we will continue to make on the path toward a more sustainable future.”
If you're interested in McDonald's efforts to help make a difference around the world, explore our Purpose & Impact.