Restaurant Brands International

FAIRR Commentary

RBI’s overarching commitment to antibiotics as stated in their 2016 Sustainability Report is focused on reducing the use of medically important antibiotics. However, the company’s brand-specific commitments are focused only on those deemed as critically important to human medicine.  These commitments cover the company’s main operating markets which are the U.S. and Canada and its two largest brands, Burger King and Tim Horton’s. It does not cover Popeye’s or RBI’s expanding international footprint. It is also only focused on poultry, despite the company sourcing other species. Moreover, the company has provided no progress updates on whether it has achieved the 2018 target.

It is also important to note that the company has been subject to investor pressure including a shareholder resolution in 2017 focused on adopting an enterprise-wide policy to phase out the use of medically important antibiotics in its meat and poultry supply chain, supported by clear timelines for implementation. This was withdrawn.

FAIRR Recommendations

We would encourage RBI to further strengthen their programme by:

  • Extending their policy to cover all relevant animal-derived proteins where antibiotics is prevalent, and all relevant markets in which it operates in and sources from.
  • Extending the scope of their commitments beyond critically important antibiotics in order to phase out the routine use of all antibiotics and/ or only use antibiotics when there is a disease present and administered by a veterinarian.
  • Setting forward looking targets and timelines to demonstrate a clear commitment to improving antibiotics stewardship.
  • Committing to third-party audits and clarify how these audits will be rolled out across all relevant markets and species to ensure supplier compliance.
  • Reporting more comprehensively and publicly on implementation progress including antibiotics use and whether past targets have been achieved.

Company Comment

No information provided


See the company response to the engagement here.