Chicago Grocery Chain Drops fairlife Following Activist Video
Jewel-Osco, a chain of 187 grocery stores in the Chicago area, announced Wednesday it was removing all fairlife products because of the “inhumane treatment of animals” shown in an undercover animal activist video released Tuesday taken at Fair Oaks Farms.
“At Jewel-Osco we strive to maintain high animal welfare standards across all areas of our business, and work in partnership with our vendors to ensure those standards are upheld,” the company’s statement said. “We apologize for any inconvenience.”
Following the video’s release, Chicago-based fairlife said in a statement that the dairy shown in the video represents less than 5% of its milk supplies.
Fairlife will immediately suspend milk deliveries from that dairy and conduct independent third-party audits at its 30 other supplying dairies within the next month, the Chicago Tribune reports.
Select Milk Producers, a cooperative Fair Oaks owners Mike and Sue McCloskey helped start, and Coca-Cola partnered to form fairlife in 2012.
Coca-Cola requires "suppliers to operate with the highest degree of integrity and comply with all laws, including animal welfare laws," they said in a statement. Additionally, they expressed support for the proactive approach the McCloskeys and their teams were taking.
"We have been in contact with fairlife about this situation and have full confidence in their management team to urgently address this issue with Fair Oaks Farms, which is a third-party supplier to fairlife," the company said. "They recognize the seriousness of this situation as their founding principles are grounded in a strong commitment to sustainability, transparency and the highest standards of animal welfare."
Following the release of the video, the McColskeys released a lengthy statement taking full responsibility for incident which you can read on their Facebook page.