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Taco Bell Will Supply Cage-Free Eggs By The End Of 2016

Update Date: Nov 19, 2015 11:41 AM EST

Taco Bell announced on Monday that it would supply eggs completely cage-free by the end of 2016, the only major fast food chain that would acquire and sell such eggs.

A similar announcement was made by Panera, McDonald's and Dunkin' Donuts.

"Implementing this change at record pace underscores that we are always listening and responding to our customers, while doing what is right for our business," Taco Bell CEO Brian Niccol said, according to Fox News.

This change will not only "appeal to customers' tastes" but is actually a response to the the animal welfare concerns of their customers, Niccol added.

Yum is the food group company that owns Taco Bell, KFC and Pizza Hut. It has been slammed for not being quick in its implementation of policies aiming at limited use of meat from animals subjected to antibiotics.

Liz Matthews, a Taco Bell executive, said that customers valued this move by the company. "Ingredient transparency is more important than ever to the next generation of Taco Bell customers," Matthews said, according to CNN Money.

Hence, cage-free eggs will be part of breakfasts such as the Crunchwrap, breakfast burritos, and breakfast tacos.

The move was appreciated by Rachel Dreskin, the Food Business Manager at Compassion in World Farming. "We commend Taco Bell for going completely cage-free in a little over a year. This is the first significant announcement they have made regarding animal welfare in the U.S. Taco Bell caters to a diverse customer base, and this announcement demonstrates that treating animals with respect is a value that is shared across the entire population," Dreskin said.

Josh Balk, senior director of the Humane Society, was also happy about the decision. "Switching to 100 percent cage-free eggs by the end of 2016 is a tremendous commitment that will quickly improve the lives of countless animals and further cement the future of egg production as being one without cages," Balk said, according to The Orange County Register.

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