Earls says it ‘made a mistake’ when it swapped Alberta beef for Certified Humane
B.C.-based Earls says it will bring Alberta beef back to its restaurants, and it will work with producers to build up a supply that meets its standards
by Elizabeth Hames
Earls says Alberta beef will soon be back on the menu, less than a week after it announced it would carry only 100 per cent Certified Humane, hormone-free and antibiotic-free beef from the U.S. in all its restaurants.
The decision prompted massive backlash from consumers, many of whom threatened to boycott the B.C.-based chain until it once again served Alberta beef, and Canadian beef producers who said they weren’t consulted.
Earls initially stood by its decision. But in a statement issued this morning, the company says it made a mistake when it chose to leave Canadian beef of the menu, and it will work with Alberta producers to build up supplies that meet its criteria.
“We want to make this right. We want Canadian beef back on our menus so we are going to work with local ranchers to build our supply of Alberta beef that meets our criteria,” said Earls president, Mo Jessa, in a statement.
“We have deep roots in Alberta. We started in Edmonton and we have many operations and employees here. Alberta has supported us. We need to support Alberta, especially in tough times. We moved to a US supplier as we thought they could supply all of our needs. It was a mistake not to include Canadian beef.”
Earls says it will now source as much beef as possible from Alberta, but didn’t say how much Certified Humane beef is available in the province.
According to the U.S.-based organization that issues the certification, Humane Farm Animal Care, no Canadian beef producers carry the designation. However, at least one U.S.-based Certified Humane producer, Aspen Ridge, sources some of its beef from Canada.