Glendale restaurant company DineEquity Inc., owner of IHOP and Applebee’s restaurants, announced Wednesday that it will eliminate the use of cramped pig cages in its pork supply chain by 2020.
Kevin Mortesen, vice president of communications for DineEquity, said the company expects vendors for all its franchisees to cooperate in slowly phasing out the practice of housing pregnant pigs in tight gestation crates.
“We recognize there are challenges to meeting this goal,” he said, “but as one of the world’s largest full-service restaurant companies, we are confident our suppliers will meet our expectations and work with us to achieve this objective.”
IHOP and Applebee’s together have more than 3,400 locations in all 50 states.
The Humane Society of the United States issued a statement in support of DineEquity’s goal, noting that the company is the latest in a growing number of major food companies to address pig welfare. Companies that have made similar pledges include Oscar Mayer, McDonald’s, Burger King, Wendy’s, Costco, Safeway and Kroger.