UK-based independent restaurant company Casual Dining Group (CDG) has signed up to the 2026 European Chicken Commitment in an effort to improve the welfare of millions of chickens.

This commitment complements the company’s cage-free egg pledge and responsible fish sourcing programme.

Before signing the commitment, the company in collaboration with Compassion in World Farming (CIWF), spent months on planning and analysis.

As part of its commitment to chicken welfare, CDG is asking other companies with similar supply chains to collaborate with it to achieve the goals of the commitment and share best practice across the industry.

Initially, CDG and CIWF will host a working group with plans to develop a five-year action plan.

The companies will support the action plan through annual progress reports to determine what challenges require attention to help deliver the standards.

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CDG group procurement director Simon Galkoff said: “The decision to sign this agreement was not something we took lightly, and we have conducted significant due diligence and research with CIWF to ensure we’re comfortable that plans are in place to meet the requirements of the commitment.

“The key to achieving this will be working together as an industry to share best practice and come together to achieve a common goal.

“We’re very much looking forward to being part of this industry collaboration and continue our close working relationship with the team at Compassion in World Farming in a continual pursuit of improving practices across our entire supply chain.”

Compassion’s director of food businesses Dr Tracey Jones said: “It’s been a pleasure to work with Casual Dining Group over the last few years. We have seen them tackle confinement in laying hens and are delighted to see them extend their welfare focus to broiler chickens. They have a genuine ambition to make a positive contribution to animal welfare across their business, but also across the wider industry.”

In April this year, CDG launched the first programme to support Syrian refugees working in the hospitality industry by partnering with the UK Department for Work and Pensions (DWP), World Jewish Relief and SPS Training Solutions.