From the beginning of 2018, Wendy's will source around 15% of its beef from a group of producers that have each committed to a 20% reduction of the only medically important antibiotic routinely fed to their cattle. Wendy’s has already built up a relationship with these producers over the past 12 months.
In a statement, it said: “Importantly, these producers will ensure that the antibiotic use in their cattle can be tracked and reduced. Wendy's is committed to increasing the amount of beef purchased from these producers and those following similar management practices.”
On the pork side, 100% of Wendy's supply chain is part of the Pork Quality Assurance Plus program and operates under federal Veterinary Feed Directive, which requires veterinary oversight of antibiotic use. As a next step, Wendy's is working with suppliers who are “like-minded in their approach to this issue and with an eye toward progressively decreasing the use of antibiotics”. In the future, Wendy's plans on working with pork producers to quantify the reductions in antibiotic use, and is committed to reporting on this progress.
Earlier this year, it announced a partnership with its suppliers to make a system-wide $30 million investment to purchase chickens that are 20% smaller than conventional ones. Wendy's has completed the process of eliminating all antibiotics important to human medicine from chicken production. All chicken served in Wendy's restaurants meets this requirement and will be process verified by the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA).