Whole Foods halts sales of live lobsters
Supermarket chain reaches decision after learning that animals were placed in storage facilities for months at a time; will also stop selling soft-shelled crab.
NEW YORK (CNNMoney.com) - Organic supermarket chain Whole Foods announced Friday it will stop selling live lobsters effectively immediately, citing the inhumane treatment of the animals.
"We are not yet sufficiently satisfied that the process of selling live lobsters is in line with our commitment to humane treatment and quality of life for animals," Margaret Wittenberg, vice president of quality standards for Whole Foods Market, said in a prepared statement.
The company reached the decision to stop the sale of the crustacean after conducting a seven-month review into its lobster procurement process, learning that in many instances the animals were held in storage facilities for several months at a time.
The company, however, will continue to sell both raw and cooked frozen lobster products from companies that meet handling and processing standards developed by Whole Foods.
Whole Foods CEO John Mackey said the company would consider resuming the sale of lobsters if improvements are made in the treatment of the animals.
Related: Wal-Mart's next conquest: Organics.