Animal welfare is always among the top ten issues of concern to our customers. In buying such a high percentage of British produce we are support the high standards of welfare that are at the heart of British farming. Our goal is to work with our farmers and suppliers to raise farm animal welfare standards and satisfy our customers need for good quality food with great value.
Owning our own abattoirs and knowing our farmers personally through buying directly from them means that we are well placed to know where our food comes from and to meet our customers’ expectations of good animal health and welfare. We visit at least 250 livestock farms every month to talk through supply and standards on farm.
We follow a range of activities to help manage animal health and welfare including:
- Having a dedicated team to monitor, develop and manage farm animal welfare standards including our Agricultural Manager, and our farm development colleagues in our own meat and egg businesses (Woodheads and Chippindales).
- Working closely with all our suppliers to measure, monitor and manage animal welfare in our fresh milk and poultry businesses, including with our team of technical assessors.
- Working with our manufacturing and technical colleagues to ensure that farm animal welfare standards are traced and audited throughout all our supply chains, from processed products to ingredients.
- Working with vets, nutritionists, colleges, auditors and farmers to consider and develop projects and learning that can help improve farm animal health and welfare standards.
- Supporting and working closely with key industry associations including the NFU, NPA, RSPCA, CIWF and Red Tractor.
- Having dedicated health and welfare targets for each of the sectors we look after, namely: pork, chicken, turkey and duck, beef, lamb, dairy, cheese and eggs.
Our latest Animal welfare report for 2018-2019 is available to read here.
We also have welfare policies for animal derived materials in non-food products, a summary of which can be seen on our corporate website.