While individual restaurants have the ability to change and adapt to new trends on the fly, airport restaurants are much less nimble. It may help to think of traditional restaurants as speed boats and airport restaurant operations more like aircraft carriers, locked on course until a cadre of generals choose to go in a different direction. That’s why it’s incredible to hear the news that HMSHost is making the switch to cage-free eggs.
HMSHost takes care of the concessions operations in over 100 airports around the globe (including serious heavy-hitters like LAX, ORD, and LAS). To make a systemwide change based on environmental concern like this is big time and it means that HMSHost is taking the quality of their ingredients really seriously. Conventional eggs and chicken farms are a major concern in terms of animal welfare and investing in cage-free eggs by a major corporation like this means that more farmers will have a much higher incentive to treat their chickens better. Luckily (for chicken and mankind alike), the cage-free trend is getting a major boost by enormous companies around the world. McDonald’s announced the switch back in September and according to NPR, these are some of the other companies that pledged to start using cage-free eggs in 2015:
- General Mills
- Dunkin’ Donuts
- Jack in the Box
- Einstein Bros. Bagels
- Caribou Coffee
- Peet’s Coffee
- Shake Shack
- Compass Group (largest foodservice company)
- Aramark (second largest foodservice company)
- Sodexo (third largest foodservice company)
- Carnival Corp. (the largest cruise liner)
- Royal Caribbean (the second-largest cruise liner)
- Flowers Foods (baked good company and maker of Wonder bread and Tastykake)
- Grupo Bimbo (world’s largest baking company)
- Michael Foods (country’s largest processed egg provider)
- Rose Acre Farms (country’s second largest egg producer)
- Rembrandt Foods (country’s third largest egg producer)
It’s a welcome change for anyone that cares about where their food is coming from. For HMSHost, the change will be gradual. Expect a full switch in all of their outlets by 2025, but you can start to see the results of this decision beginning this summer. From the press release:
This June travelers can expect to find cage-free eggs being served at HMSHost operated restaurants including Tuscany Café, Goose Island, and Tortas Frontera (already serving cage-free eggs) at Chicago O’Hare International Airport; Gladstones and Campanile at Los Angeles International Airport; HMSHost’s exclusive restaurant 1897 Market at Charlotte Douglas International Airport; and PGA TOUR Grill and Sammy’s Beach Bar & Grill at McCarran International Airport Las Vegas.
The next time you order an omelet before your flight, you can rest (over) easy knowing that the eggs you’re eating were not born in captivity. But did the chicken have any friends?