US restaurant chain Wendy’s has joined the Progressive Beef programme in a move to facilitate advancements in animal care, antibiotics and sustainability.

Progressive Beef is an animal care and sustainability programme created using various best practices and third-party verification.

The programme focuses on three core areas cattle care, which are food safety and antibiotic use and environmental sustainability.

The company made this announcement as part of its annual update on corporate social responsibility (CSR) and sustainability initiatives spanning food, family and community.

Wendy’s will start implementing the programme in a major part of its beef supply chain from next year and plans to achieve at least 50% adoption by 2021.

It will offer training to its staff on management practices and hands-on veterinary care, use antibiotics responsibly under the supervision of a veterinarian, as well as adhering to withdrawal time, and use natural resources responsibly.

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“The initiative also complements the company’s commitment to reduce energy usage across company-owned and operated restaurants by 20% by 2025.”

The company will use USDA-approved auditors to verify these efforts and will use the metrics in finding and making improvements.

In addition, Wendy’s unveiled new ‘Smart Family of Designs’ initiative to grow and differentiate the brand. The initiative offers various development options to franchisees enabling them to reduce the impact on the environment as well as promote energy efficiency.

The initiative also complements the company’s commitment to reduce energy usage across company-owned and operated restaurants by 20% by 2025.

Recently, the restaurant chain announced its commitment to source vine-ripened tomatoes exclusively from greenhouse farms for its North American restaurants by early 2019.

Furthermore, the company has introduced WeCare programme to offer short-term financial assistance to its employees who are struggling financially due to federally or state-declared natural disasters.