Waitrose puts the emphasis on welfare

Chicken sold in Waitrose is to come from far ms with higher welfare standards, the retailer has announced.

A new, low maximum stocking density for its whole, own-brand, Select Farm Chicken, will affect product in-store from this September. The changes mean the chicken will be awarded the RSPCA Freedom Foods label, a first for supermarket own-brand chicken in Britain, the retailer claimed. The move also has the support of Compassion In World Farming (CIWF).

Waitrose said it previously had a 10% lower stocking density than the industry standard but as from September it has the industry's lowest stocking density in any major supermarket, excluding free range and organic, with 20% fewer birds in each flock.

Philip Lymbery, chief executive of CIWF, said he welcomed the move by Waitrose.