Colruyt is joining forces with 17 Belgian breeders by launching an exclusive collaborative chain for meat chickens. The chickens are to become genuine “welfare chickens”.
Straight from the henhouse
Colruyt is entering into a direct cooperation with 17 Belgian chicken breeders, setting up a completely new, vertically integrated chain for meat chickens. “In June, we started to introduce chicken products that meet better welfare criteria and now we are taking this one step further by setting up a completely new chain for welfare chickens,” says Saskia De Block, responsible for agriculture at Colruyt Group.
The so-called “welfare chickens” comply with higher animal welfare standards, such as a slower-growing breed, 40% more space in the house and investments in daylight and perches. All 17 breeders will adopt the NestBorn technique, which means eggs are laid in the house and chicks hatch there. The meat from the chickens will hit the shelves at Colruyt and in one variant at OKay.
Colruyt took a commitment last year to have its range of fresh standard chicken meet higher welfare standards by 2026. The direct cooperation with the 17 breeders is also in line with Colruyt Group’s ambition to work more directly with Belgian farmers. Previously, Colruyt Group invested in its own supply chains for potatoes, soy and organic vegetables, among others.