Pizza Hut and its WingStreet wing shops will eliminate chickens fed medically important antibiotics, the fast-food chain announced this morning. This move makes Pizza Hut the first national pizza chain to take such measures.
"We are dedicated to listening to our customers and to serving better food. Today's announcement to no longer serve chicken raised with antibiotics by 2022 demonstrates our commitment to serve food that not only tastes great, but that customers can feel good about eating," Marianne Radley, Pizza Hut's chief brand officer, said in a statement. "Our customers are our business, and we will continue to push ourselves to ensure that we are delivering the quality food and quality experience our customers expect and deserve."
The move will impact all chicken used by the chain. It already has commitments on meat toppings, which it says are free from artificial colors, flavors, and preservatives. Pizza Hut eliminated BHA/BHT from all meats in 2016 and removed artificial preservatives from its cheese in 2017. The company says it has also removed partially hydrogenated oils and MSG from its menu items and reduced added sodium by three million pounds.
"The Pizza Hut culinary team has done a terrific job of listening to the voice of the customer, and have worked tirelessly to mind emerging health trends while not impacting the great taste that makes our food so special," said Radley.
Antibiotics fed to livestock perpetuate the risk of antibiotic-resistant infections that kill more than 23,000 people every year. More than 70 percent of all medically important antibiotics are fed to livestock animals to help prevent and treat infections, but they're most often used to enhance rapid weight gain, shortening the production cycle.
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