The year was 1999. The Euro had just been introduced, Bill Gates predicted the future of smartphones, and Cher topped the charts in over 20 countries asking in her newly auto-tuned voice, “Do you believe in life after love?” This same year, O’Briens opened the doors of its first cafe in Singapore to bring specialty coffees and teas, hot and cold sandwiches, triple-deckers, wraps, and more to The Lion City. Since then, the company has expanded across Asia and has become an iconic go-to destination for coffee and sandwich enthusiasts.

Headquartered in Dublin, Ireland, O’Briens runs over 300 cafes worldwide including 20 outlets in Malaysia and additional stores in mainland China, Taiwan, India, Indonesia, Bahrain, Australia, Singapore, and Thailand. In a move that will undoubtedly please its Asian clientele, O’Briens worked with Lever Foundation on a new policy to source only cage-free eggs by 2025 in its APAC stores.

“We feel the time is right for a full shift to using only cage-free egg ingredients in our cafes in Malaysia and APAC by 2025 to make our supply chain kinder to animals and healthier for consumers.
-Brian Pua, Managing Director, O’Briens Irish Sandwich Cafe

In recent months, other companies have also announced plans to upgrade their egg policies and phase out caged eggs, citing animal welfare and food safety as the primary reasons for making the change. OldTown White Coffee, one of Malaysia’s largest kopitiam (coffee house) restaurant chains, recently pledged to end the use of cage eggs after working with Lever; Caffè Nero, Krispy Kreme, Caribou Coffee, Au Bon Pain, Dunkin’ Donuts, illy, Peet’s Coffee and Costa are among leading global coffee chains that switched to using only cage-free eggs.

As the winds of change blow across the region thanks to increasing consumer concern over the environmental and ethical implications of food, Lever will continue to engage with domestic and international brands to improve the conditions of egg-laying hens in Asia.


This work happened because of the support of people like you. Please consider donating today to build a more humane and sustainable protein supply in Asia.