OAK BROOK, Ill. – McDonald’s restaurants in the UK will begin sourcing all of its pork from local suppliers meeting animal-welfare standards established by the Royal Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals (RSPCA). This move to use only Freedom Food pork marks McDonald’s latest effort to provide consumers with locally and responsibly sourced food, and to continue supporting British and Irish farmers, according to a press release.

As a result, McDonald’s will become the UK’s second-largest buyer of Freedom Food pork. All sausage and bacon on its menu, ranging from the breakfast McMuffins to the bacon in premium salads and promotional burgers, will come from Freedom Food-approved farms.

McDonald’s new welfare standard forms part of its continuing commitment to align the quality and sourcing of its ingredients with consumers’ changing preferences and expectations. Starting at the end of April, all hog farmers supplying McDonald’s must provide bright, airy environments for pigs, bedded pens and adequate space for them to move around.

“As a big customer of British and Irish farming, we are committed to using our scale to drive positive changes such as improvements in welfare standards,” said Warren Anderson, vice president, Supply Chain, McDonald’s UK. “Not only will our move to Freedom Food pork make it easier for people to make affordable, ethical choices on the high street, we hope that more of Britain’s pig producers will have the confidence to invest in the future and adopt the RSPCA’s higher-welfare standards on their farms.”