Vegetarians International Voice for Animals

Dive into Action for Ducks

Since the launch of Viva!'s campaign, Sainsburys, Marks & Spencer, Tesco, Waitrose, Somerfield and ASDA have stopped selling meat from debeaked Muscovy (also known as Barbary) ducks. Harrods have withdrawn all factory farmed duck meat. Waitrose now only sells meat from 'free-range' ducks, and now provides outdoor ponds for swimming. Marks & Spencer has introduced 'free-range' ducks, at least for some of the ducks they sell since our Day of Action against them. These victories show that consumer pressure works! However, many still stock intensively farmed meat from Mallard-type ducks. Please write or call the following and ask them to withdraw it and stop selling duck meat altogether.

(Updated November 2009)

Stuart Rose, Chief Executive,
Marks & Spencer, Waterside House, 35 North Wharf Rd, London, W21 NW 
Email at: retailcustomer.services@marks-and-spencer.com
Call customer services on 0845 302 1234 

Please note: Marks & Spencer says that all of their 'fresh duck' is free range, but they do not have access to water for swimming. They do not make these claims for the other duck they sell (such as in duck wraps or frozen products), which means that it is possible that this duck meat comes from more intensive indoor units. We believe that any welfare policy should be equal across all their range - and they should at the very least follow Waitrose's example by allowing ducks access to water for swimming. Tell Marks & Spencer they should not be farming ducks at all.

Justin King, Group Chief Executive
J Sainsbury plc, 33 Holborn, London, EC1N 2HT
Email Sainsbury's from their website: www.sainsburys.co.uk/sol/contact_us/contact_us.jsp
Call customer Services on freefone 0800 636 262

Please note: Sainsbury's ducks are factory farmed indoors and never see water for swimming. See here for our 2009 expose of their supplier. They did sell 'free-range' ducks, but stopped because of lack of sales (possibly because their customers weren't made aware of the differences). They now claim 'welfare problems' for not being able to have free-range ducks - but that doesn't stop Marks & Spencer nor Waitrose. They also claim that are moving over to the RSPCA's Freedom Foods standards for ducks - but that does not mean 'free-range'. In fact, those standards allow what we would say is still intensive farming. They also claim to allow ducks access to open water, but that is misleading. What they are actually talking about is a water trough just 50cm by 20cm - not per bird but per 100 birds! For birds who would enjoy the freedom of an open river in the wild this is a major welfare insult. Tell Sainsbury's they should not be farming ducks at all.

Marc J. Bolland, CEO, Morrisons / Safeways, Hillmore House, Thorton Rd, Bradford, West Yorkshire BD3 7DL
Call customer services on 0845 611 6111

Please note: Morrisons are claiming to be selling RSPCA Freedom Foods 'Breckland' ducks from MFD Foods (a subsidiary of Gressingham Foods). This means that it is almost certain that they never go outside and do not have water for swimming. See information on Sainsbury's for Freedom Foods standards. Tell Morrisons they should not be farming ducks at all.

John Cleland, Managing Director,
Somerfield Stores, Somerfield House, Whitchurch Lane, Bristol BS14 OTJ
Email Somerfield from their website: www.somerfield.co.uk/contactus
Call customer services on freefone 0800 0686 727 

Please note: the Co-op now owns Somerfield (hence the same contact details), which means that their welfare standards are likely to be the same.

Peter Marks, Group Chief Executive,
Co-Op, PO Box 53, New Century House, Manchester M60 4ES.
Email Co-op at: customer.relations@co-op.co.uk 
Call customer services on 0800 0686 727

Please note: Co-op ducks are not 'free-range'. This means that, despite meeting RSPCA Freedom Foods' standards they never go outside and do not have water for swimming. See information on Sainsbury's for Freedom Foods standards. Tell Co-op they should not be farming ducks at all.

Terry Leahy, Chief Executive,
Tesco, Tesco House, PO Box 18, Delamare Road, Cheshunt, Herts EN8 9SL
Email at: customer.services@tesco.co.uk.
Call customer services on freefone 0800 505 555

Please note: Tesco ducks are not 'free-range'. This means that, despite meeting RSPCA Freedom Foods' standards they never go outside and do not have water for swimming. See information on Sainsbury's for Freedom Foods standards. Tell Tesco they should not be farming ducks at all.

Mark Price, Managing Director,
Waitrose, Southern Industrial Area, Bracknell RG12 8YA
Email at: customer_service@waitrose.co.uk
Call customer services on freephone 0800 188 884

Please note: Comparatively, Waitrose offer the best welfare system for ducks raised for meat. From the age of three weeks ducks have access to pasture and ponds for swimming. This raises the questions as to why other supermarkets cannot follow suit? However, in the past, Waitrose have said that their 'small'  flocks are actually in excess of 4,000 ducks - hardly small scale! Also, Waitrose ducks will still live only a fraction of their natural lifespan before being sent to slaughter. Tell Waitrose they should not be farming ducks at all.

Andy Bond, President,
Asda, Asda House, Southbank, Great Wilson Street, Leeds, LS11 5AD
Email Asda from their website: http://your.asda.com/section-contact-asda
Call customer services on 0844 481 5000

Please note: We are waiting on a reply from Asda to let us know about their duck standards. However, their meat packaging makes no claims that their ducks are 'free-range', so it is unlikely that they are. Tell Asda they should not be farming ducks at all.

You can use our letter to write to the above supermarkets