Consumers are constantly looking for quality marks on meat or eggs and take them as indicators of welfare standards, which is not always reliable. Compassion in World Farming (Compassion) and OneKind this week jointly published an assessment of the welfare status of a range of animal-related quality assurance schemes in the UK.
At the least rigorous end of the spectrum, researcher Heather Pickett encountered codified versions of basic industry standard practices (eg tail docking or tooth clipping on pigs). These are about an animal management but not welfare.
- Top of the class? The Scottish Organic Producers’ Association and the Soil Association scored highly.
- Need to try harder? The NFU’s Red Tractor plugs British farming but comes unstuck on welfare, despite the claims it makes.