Animals

Everyone in our supply chain has a responsibility to treat animals well. 

Context:  Animal welfare is an important part of an organic livestock program. At certified organic cattle properties, annual organic certification inspections ensure cattle have stocking rates appropriate for the region, taking into consideration feed production capacity, health, nutrient balance and environmental impact.

There are no Sustainable Development Goals for animal welfare.

Actions:  We are pioneers in using existing supply chain data to monitor animal health and welfare and provide feedback to producers. We have been providing feedback on bruising, meat colour and fat depth slaughter data since 2017 as indicators of animal welfare. In July 2018 we completed our Feedback Loop project, supported by MLA Donor Company, which confirmed offal data collected at processing can be a valuable source of animal health information for producers.

To further improve how we communicate this data to producers, we held a one-day hackathon with behavioural science consultancy Behavioural Insights in July 2019.  We will be working to assess and implement the suggestions from this event in 2019/20.

In 2018/19 we worked to improve our animal welfare work further by forming an Animal Wellbeing Committee with producer, vet and retailer representatives and drafting an animal welfare strategy.  Key components of our animal welfare strategy are to:

* Create animal welfare standards for our supply chain

* Develop a process to monitor performance using existing data

* Participate in industry animal welfare initiatives

* Enhance our feedback loop to producers using behaviour theory to nudge change.