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Posted on Fri, Apr 6, 2012 : 11:06 a.m.

Humane Society pressures Ann Arbor-based Domino's Pizza over pig gestation crates

By Lizzy Alfs

The Humane Society of the United States wants Ann Arbor-based Domino’s Pizza to stop buying its pork products from producers that keep their pigs in gestation crates, MLive reports.

Gestation crates confine and immobilize pregnant sows during most of their adult lives.


Gestation crates are used to confine pregnant sows.

Photo from Humane Society

The Humane Society, which bought stock in Domino’s in 2010, submitted a shareholder resolution last fall asking Domino’s to report on the feasibility of ensuring its pork products come from producers that don’t use the crates.

Domino’s responded to the resolution: "We believe this is an issue that should be addressed directly with producers and suppliers, not customers.”

The society then recently filed an exempt solicitation with the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission, urging shareholders to vote in favor of the proposal on Domino’s 2012 proxy, according to a release.

The state of Michigan has already moved to make meat producers phase out gestation crates - passing a law that prohibits keeping sows in the crates except for seven days before their due date. The law doesn’t take effect until April 2020.

Major restaurant chains, including McDonald’s and Wendy’s, have recently agreed to phase out the practices from their supply chain.

To read the full MLive report click here.

Lizzy Alfs is a business reporter for Reach her at 734-623-2584 or email her at Follow her on Twitter at



Sat, Apr 7, 2012 : 3:20 p.m.

Call me cruel but I think there are a lot more important issues to be delved into.


Mon, Apr 9, 2012 : 1:04 p.m.

What are you working on?

Robert D. Mosley

Sat, Apr 7, 2012 : 4:02 a.m.

Domino's should just get rid of the crates and before 8 years! And, it should be a fight that the public--those who eat at Domino's and provide the profits--know every step of the way. There is enough secrecy with these huge corporations who are acting more and more like King George!


Sat, Apr 7, 2012 : 3:36 a.m.

Wow, an eight year phase out of gestation crates. What's the hurry?

Usual Suspect

Sat, Apr 7, 2012 : 4:01 a.m.

Apparently the law also has a gestation period.


Fri, Apr 6, 2012 : 9:09 p.m.

Lizzy - you incorrectly reference the Humane Society in the article and under the picture. It needs to always be HSUS. The Humane Society is like the Humane Society of Huron Valley which does wonderful work taking care of animals. HSUS does none of that. Here's all you need to know about HSUS.


Sat, Apr 7, 2012 : 2:20 a.m.

Yes sir! I can only vote once......

Bertha Venation

Fri, Apr 6, 2012 : 8:51 p.m.

Not sure if it's true, but I was told that the Humane Society of the US euthanizes animals, so what makes them holier than thou?


Sat, Apr 7, 2012 : 1:56 p.m.

If you don't know if its true, perhaps you shouldn't post it. What makes commenters holier than thou?


Sat, Apr 7, 2012 : 2:19 a.m.

They do nothing for any particular animal. Only push for junk like this so we all eventually eat only veggies.


Fri, Apr 6, 2012 : 7:27 p.m.

When those protesting against Domino's start protesting against Zingerman's and the source of all their deli sandwiches. That's when I will take them seriously! But they won't do that because Domino's is an easy target.


Fri, Apr 6, 2012 : 7:40 p.m.

Money is also a factor. Do I have to spell it out?


Fri, Apr 6, 2012 : 7:23 p.m.

Instead of worrying about the lives of pigs, what about the people who work at Domino's? The humane society cares more for animals than people. What a bunch of heartless people!

Michigan Reader

Tue, Apr 10, 2012 : 12:33 a.m.

@craigjjs--Domino's provides its employees with cubicles. (Without doors.) And the many employees frequently walk the hallways for exercise. (For a reduction in health insurance premiums, or a rebate, I'm not sure which.)


Sat, Apr 7, 2012 : 1:55 p.m.

employees, not employments.


Sat, Apr 7, 2012 : 1:54 p.m.

Is Dominos keeping their employments in gestation crates?

Stephanie Roose

Fri, Apr 6, 2012 : 7:21 p.m.

Just say NO!


Fri, Apr 6, 2012 : 7 p.m.

This article highlights why the US needs a strong Humane Society. Good for them to educate us and raise issues like this to broaden people's perspectives - a far more useful thing to do than Dominos' contribution to the world of broadening people's waste lines and fostering an explosion in obesity and heart disease.


Fri, Apr 6, 2012 : 6:57 p.m.

Wanna bet the people behind this movement are vegetarian/vegans who are looking to hurt/close the businesses of meat suppliers?


Fri, Apr 6, 2012 : 6:56 p.m.

Ann Arbor liberal crusaders are at it again...who cares?


Fri, Apr 6, 2012 : 6:30 p.m.

Gestation crates were developed because they cut down the number of piglet deaths before weaning. I guess that means that the Humane Society is pro-piglet deaths. Where were the pro-piglet advocates when the Board of Commissioners was being pressured to give more money to the Humane Society?


Fri, Apr 6, 2012 : 6:14 p.m.

It's not about how the sausage is made but what's in it. There are a lot of imperfections in our food supply. How much can one trust the FDA or USDA? I see that pizzas made at Whole Foods are a very popular item so price does not matter if the quality is outstanding. We all have choice and personal preferences so if I want to have a Domino's Pizza or Cottage Inn pizza, I will at my discretion.


Fri, Apr 6, 2012 : 6 p.m.

If gestation gates keep the price of my pizza down, than I'm pro-gestation gates!

Dog Guy

Fri, Apr 6, 2012 : 5:42 p.m.

It is certainly more natural to let sows eat their piglets or crush them than to use gestation crates. Driving the interstates, I see three acre chicken houses each with a 64-square-foot fenced enclosure by an open door. If any of the twenty thousand layers or broilers want to free range, they are welcome to step outside. Most chickens prefer to stay with the other chickens where the food and water is. That small yard makes the entire flock "free range." I see the HSUS ads on late-night television for neurotics. For "only" $19 per month I can sponsor a fluffy kitty with big sad eyes. HSUS does not care for any animals, so perhaps what is sought is sponsors for baptism or confirmation of the animals.


Sat, Apr 7, 2012 : 6:40 p.m.

Uh huh. So HS, HSI and ASPCA are just bunk right? I highly doubt it from the information I get in email form every single day. They are asking for donations. If you can? Great! Otherwise volunteer.

Wolf's Bane

Fri, Apr 6, 2012 : 5:38 p.m.

I stopped eating Domino's Pizza when they refused to carry anchovies as a topping. That was back in 1996.


Sat, Apr 7, 2012 : 2:17 a.m.

Yeah the army of 1

zip the cat

Fri, Apr 6, 2012 : 4:53 p.m.

I guess all you whiners and complainers of pregant pigs are going to STOP eating 99% of whats sold today. The chicken you eat comes from chickens held in pens they can hardly turn around in Eggs come from chickens held in cages so small they can't all sleep at the same time. Veal from veal calfs held in stanchions from day one and only given milk to eat Your meat comes from cattle held in pens with so many animals they can't move around If the state thinks its so cruel why are they waiting till 2020 to enforce it. This is the same humane society that says pit bulls make great family pets. Yet others put them down and refuse to adopt them out .


Sat, Apr 7, 2012 : 6:38 p.m.

Trader Joes just announced they will only use free range animals and this includes chickens.


Fri, Apr 6, 2012 : 7:01 p.m.

Pit Bulls DO make good pets if they are treated well by HUMANS. If you abuse an animal (or a person for that matter) and teach it to be cruel and to kill, guess what? It will. But if you raise an animal with love, care and good training, the animal will be a wonderful pet to have. The breed of the animal has no relevance to it. And sure, I'd love all animals to be free ranged and not kept in cages. And I hope someday they will. Just because we're going to use them for food doesn't mean we can treat them inhumanely.


Fri, Apr 6, 2012 : 3:48 p.m.

As if I need yet ANOTHER reason to boycott Domino's and their so-called "pizza"


Sat, Apr 7, 2012 : 6:36 p.m.

Another tarnish in the halo. I totally agree. Boycott Domino's.


Fri, Apr 6, 2012 : 7:15 p.m.

I can't imagine a vegan like you ever was a big fan of pizza.

Wolf's Bane

Fri, Apr 6, 2012 : 5:39 p.m.

I would hardly call it pizza.


Fri, Apr 6, 2012 : 4:18 p.m.

Ok....what exactly is your first reason ? And I hate to break the news to you but if you buy just about any pizza that has pork on it the sweet piggys are raised under the same conditions


Fri, Apr 6, 2012 : 3:43 p.m.

They believe that this should be addressed with suppliers, not customers? Looks like that ad campaign isn't the only time Domino's is saying "No"! Unfortunately, customers will be saying "no" to their overrated pizza, and especially if they make a big deal out of this. Any large company has enough leverage to either force suppliers to abide by their rules, or they can find another supplier. But I guess "no means no"...