McDonald’s Will Start Using Sustainable Beef… Eventually

If you’ve been jonesing for a McDonald’s burger made from sustainable beef, we’ve got some good news and some bad news. First, the good news is that I finally finished my crossword puzzle. Oh and also that Mickey D’s is telling customers it will, in fact, serve sustainable beef. But the sort of bad news if you want that meat right now is that the Golden Arches won’t have that until 2016.

In a blog post on the company site yesterday, McDonald’s acknowledged that while there’s a bunch to choose from on its menu, the burger remains a go-to for many people.

“That’s just one reason we want to do our part to improve environmental practices in the way beef is produced, support positive workplaces in the beef industry, and drive continuous improvement in animal health and welfare,” the company writes. “Plus, we envision doing all of this while providing affordability and quality, along with economic viability for those who raise cattle and produce beef.”

But the company says it’s not like it can just drop its current suppliers and start writing checks, which is why the goal is 2016 for McDonald’s to start purchasing sustainable beef.

“This sounds simple, but it’s actually a big challenge because there hasn’t been a universal definition of sustainable beef,” explains McDonald’s of its aim for using “verified” sustainable beef.

Once the clock strikes midnight on January 1, 2016, all burgers won’t magically turn into sustainable beef burgers, either. It’s going to take some time, and a spokeswoman tells CNBC there’s no exact number on how much beef it’ll be buying.

“We will focus on increasing the annual amount each year, but it is too early to predict the quantity that will be purchased in 2016,” she explains.

So there’s your good news — sustainable beef of some sort, in some amount, in two years. Better than nothing, perhaps.

Our Journey to Verified Sustainable Beef [McDonald’s Blog]

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