Sustainable Animal Protein

Supporting Responsibly Produced Animal Protein


As a global food company that serves millions of meals containing poultry, beef, dairy, pork and egg products every day, Animal Welfare is among our most material issues. We have a responsibility to be good stewards of the animals raised for food throughout our supply chain.

Our commitment to animal health and well-being is unwavering and guided by our holistic, science-based Sustainable Animal Protein Principles. These principles consider the interrelated, complex issues involved in maintaining sustainable food production systems.

We support the Five Freedoms for all animals used for food in our supply chain, which include:


Our animal protein sourcing is guided by a set of sustainable sourcing principles:

  1. Food Safety & Quality: Food safety and quality is our priority. That’s why we regularly audit suppliers to help ensure compliance with our standards for animal welfare. Learn more about our food safety and quality governance and practices.
  2. Animal Health & Well-Being: We believe in the ethical and humane treatment of animals raised for food. Our Animal Welfare Advisory Council, along with our sustainability team, advocates continuous improvement in the farm animal health and well-being practices of our suppliers and engagement with key animal welfare stakeholders. Ensuring animal health and well-being requires comprehensive, carefully considered health management programs that may at times use antimicrobials judiciously to maintain or restore good animal health.
  3. Environmental Stewardship: In collaboration with our suppliers, we are invested in implementing and maintaining sustainable, integrated livestock production systems that are mindful of air and water quality, land use and GHG emissions. We seek good livestock stewardship and continuous improvement to conserving environmental resources within our supply chain.
  4. Food Security: Global food security is a key part of the UN Sustainable Development Goals and remains at threat. Our sustainable sourcing practices help support the growing global need for more accessible sources of animal proteins like poultry. The safe and consistent production and availability of poultry is a major priority for Yum!, as consumer demand is expected to rise with population and economic growth.
  5. Responsible Suppliers: We partner with suppliers that are dedicated to producing safe and more animal proteins over the long term. Our suppliers must follow our Supplier Code of Conduct, which requires them to comply with our food safety and quality standards, maintain fair employment practices, and provide a safe, healthy and productive work environment. We offer third-party independent consultation and science-based education programs focused directly on strengthening their capability.

All chicken, eggs and dairy served domestically by Yum! Brands are USDA-inspected and supplied by domestic farms that operate according to industry-standard animal welfare guidelines. We are now in the process of synchronizing our animal welfare programs globally with the aim of adopting a foundational animal welfare auditing system and policies for poultry, eggs, beef, pork and dairy.

Good Antimicrobial Stewardship


Our dedication to animal health and well-being requires thoughtful, comprehensive health management programs that may necessitate the use of antibiotics to maintain or restore good animal health. We are aware of the rising threat of antimicrobial resistance (AMR) and support One Health, a holistic and multisectoral long-term effort to combat AMR by the United Nations World Health Organization (WHO), the Food and Agriculture Organization, the World Organisation for Animal Health and other key stakeholders. We believe AMR jeopardizes several UN Sustainable Development Goals and that responsible and judicious use of antimicrobials in agriculture is critical to world food security and beneficial to human, animal and environmental health. All of Yum!’s brands comply with the USDA guidelines that went into effect in 2017, to minimize antimicrobial resistance requiring that our U.S. suppliers remove medically important antimicrobials used for production purposes and ensuring that the use of such drugs for therapeutic treatment is overseen by a licensed veterinarian.

We have been working with our suppliers in recent years to minimize, where possible, the use of antimicrobials (including antibiotics) important to human medicine as defined by WHO. Each of our brands has made significant strides toward eliminating human crossover antibiotics in our poultry supply chain:

  • KFC: By the end of 2018, all chicken purchased by KFC U.S. will be raised without antibiotics important to human medicine, as part of the brand’s return to its roots, a journey called Re-Colonelization. This effort aims to return KFC to Colonel Sanders’ standards and includes KFC chicken tenders and popcorn chicken. The commitment will also make KFC the first major chicken chain to extend this commitment to its bone-in chicken, which includes the signature Original Recipe, Extra Crispy and Kentucky Grilled Chicken, as well as KFC wings.
  • Pizza Hut: In 2017, Pizza Hut U.S. removed antibiotics important to human medicine from chicken served as pizza toppings. By 2022, the brand plans to remove antibiotics important to human medicine from its WingStreet wings. This makes Pizza Hut U.S. the first national pizza company to commit to removing medically important antibiotics from all the chicken it serves.
  • Taco Bell: In 2016, Taco Bell committed to serving chickens raised without the use of antibiotics important to human medicine in all U.S. restaurants. The brand achieved this goal in 2017.

Learn more about our Good Antimicrobial Stewardship efforts.


We are currently exploring long- and short-term goals related to the sustainable sourcing of each of our key animal protein commodities. Taco Bell is one of the largest beef purchasers in the U.S., serving 290 million pounds of 100 percent USDA premium ground beef each year. Given the importance of beef on Taco Bell’s menu, creating a more sustainable beef supply chain in the U.S. is a priority. To that end, Taco Bell is a member of the U.S. Roundtable for Sustainable Beef (USRSB), a network of beef experts from the supply chain, academia and research, environmental and animal welfare organizations and veterinarians. This stakeholder engagement will help Taco Bell ensure that the U.S.-grown beef it sources meets Yum!’s standards for sustainable sourcing.


Taco Bell met its 2016 goal to exclusively serve 100 percent cage-free eggs in all U.S. Taco Bell corporate and franchise-owned restaurants, making the transition faster than any other national quick-service restaurant brand. Since then, the brand expanded and achieved its secondary goal to source 100 percent cage-free egg ingredients, meaning ingredients in all of its mayo-based sauces and desserts are now made using cage-free eggs.