Global Food Partners (GFP) is working with global companies to execute and maintain high standards of animal welfare and responsible sourcing policies. In Asia, it looks to address one of the pressing concerns for the food and hospitality industries. It wants to help them develop and maintain a responsibly sourced cage-free egg supply chain.
Singapore-based multinational consultancy firm Global Food Partners aims to create a positive impact in Asia by implementing responsibly sourced supply chains.
No commitments to source cage-free eggs
A majority of the U.S. and European companies have global commitments in place to source only cage-free eggs.
However, in Asia, these companies have not been able to tackle supply chain challenges. This is partly due to the large number of egg-laying hens used for commercial purposes kept in conventional cage production systems.
In Singapore, 99% of egg-laying hens are predicted to be housed in these kinds of systems. In Hong Kong, several eggs are imported from mainland China. Again, these eggs arrive from a country where 90% of its laying hens are crammed in cages. China is the world’s largest egg producer. In 2018 alone, the country produced 466 billion eggs, more than a third of the global egg production.
Responsibly sourced cage-free eggs
GFP will start by addressing one of Asia’s animal welfare issues for the food and hospitality industries.
It will work with both food suppliers on cage-free egg production and food buyers on cage-free sourcing. This will ensure that both ends of the chain will not only be sustainable but be able to increase their profits.
GFP analyzes the existing egg supply chain and then formulates a roadmap with actions and strategies to enable companies to implement cage-free sourcing policies. At the same time, GFP works with egg producers to make the switch from conventional methods to higher-welfare cage-free production.
Co-founder and chief executive officer at Global Food Partners, Elissa Lane said that GFP is looking to empower local farmers along with food and hospitality corporations. “By training farmers in Asia who lack knowledge around implementing cage-free production, we not only help companies to go cage-free but also create new supply chains that allow these same farmers to go to market with products at a higher price – a win-win by any definition. Asia’s increased focus on sustainability and responsible sourcing mean that our launch in the region represents a considerable new opportunity to drive change.”
By training farmers in Asia who lack knowledge around implementing cage-free production, we not only help companies to go cage-free but also create new supply chains that allow these same farmers to go to market with products at a higher priceElissa Lane, co-founder and chief executive officer at Global Food Partners
Training programs and centres
In July, GFP will set up virtual training courses for the industry on cage-free egg sourcing, production, and purchasing.
GFP will launch its training centers and model farms by the end of 2021 in Indonesia and China. Aimed at producers, the centers will be dedicated to the technical side of farm management and welfare practices. Along with agricultural colleges in Indonesia and China, producers will have hands-on training – like spending a week on a farm, and learning the necessary steps needed for successful cage-free egg production.
Lane, who has worked as the director for Farm Animal Welfare at the Washington, D.C. HQ of Humane Society International, added: “Industry training for farmers and businesses in Asia has often shown models from Europe that understandably don’t resonate or work in such a different cultural and physical environment. Consequently our virtual trainers – as well as our GFP training centers in Indonesia and China – provide examples and technical expertise specifically targeted to work in the region. We want to ensure that businesses can source cage-free eggs and that farmers are able to produce cage-free eggs sustainably and for the long-term, by adopting best practice management skills on farm skills and practices.”
GFP has worked with several leading corporations like Accor, Club Med, and Grand Hyatt Singapore. As part of its work, staff and egg supplier training were conducted in Asian markets including China, Singapore, Thailand, Malaysia, Japan, Indonesia, and The Philippines.
Global producer partnerships
In China, GFP is presently working with PingYao Weihai Ecological Agriculture in PingYao. Through this partnership, GGP is supporting the setup and operations of the center’s new cage-free egg rearing and layer hen facilities.
In the hospitality sector, it is working with Club Med & Grand Hyatt Singapore to help them source only cage-free eggs for all resorts in Europe, Brazil, and the United States from 2025.
Senior regional buyer of Club Med’s purchasing department, Frederic Tiers said: “In Europe, all eggs served with their shell at the buffet already come from free range hens. GFP has been able to provide us with implementation strategies and roadmaps for our Asian operations markets that we’ve found particularly challenging in terms of identifying viable cage-free egg suppliers and producers. We look forward to continuing to work with GFP to ensure we meet our cage-free targets in the region.”
Lead image courtesy of Pexels.