French supermarket Carrefour has announced it’s removed dog meat products from two of its outlets in China.
The news comes amid ongoing backlash against the consumption of dog meat in the country.
But perhaps what comes as a bigger surprise is that the supermarket giant carried dog meat in the first place.
Carrefour, which has more than 200 stores in China, promised back in 2012 that it would remove dog meat from its shelves, when approached by Animals Asia, an animal rights group.
However, according to Animals Asia, a follow-up visit to the store in May 2017 — the dog meat products were still on sale.
“[We] discovered two branches in the Chinese city of Xuzhou with dog meat products openly on sale, including ‘turtle-juiced dog meat'”, said Animals Asia on its website.
The product appears to be a dish of dog meat steeped in a broth made of turtle meat and vinegar.
“No doubt this will come as a shock to their millions of customers in Europe and beyond,” said the animal rights group.
Thousands of users later signed a petition by Animals Asia asking for Carrefour to remove its dog meat products.
Consuming dog meat isn’t illegal in China, but it’s seldom practised by the younger generation, and seen more as a traditional dish. The government hasn’t banned dog meat yet, but it’s made steps recently to clamp down on the sale of dogs at the notorious Yulin dog meat festival.
“This is a huge win…[but] while its fantastic news that Carrefour has taken dog meat products off the shelves in these two stores, the company has 200 stores in China — we can’t check them all,” Animals Asia’s director of cat and dog welfare, Irene Feng, said in a statement.
“Customers deserve a guarantee from Carrefour that it will adopt a ‘no dog meat policy’.”
Carrefour has over 10,000 outlets across 30 countries worldwide.
According to animal activists the Humane Society International, China allegedly kills more than 10 million dogs annually for human consumption.
Mashable has reached out to Carrefour and Animals Asia for comment.