The Animal Agriculture Alliance in January released a new brochure highlighting producer-driven animal welfare programs. It focuses on programs developed by 11 agriculture and feed associations and stresses that animal welfare is a high priority of America's farmers and ranchers.
According to the alliance, the brochure is intended to help consumers understand that strong, healthy animals are critically important to America's farmers and ranchers. "Though public concern over animal welfare is a recent development that only emerged mainly in the 1980s, animal welfare has always been critical to America's farmers and ranchers," said Kay Johnson, the alliance's executive vice president.
According to the organization, nearly every farm animal organization has an animal welfare program developed in cooperation with experts who include veterinarians, scientists, and others with experience and expertise providing care for farm animals. These experts assist the agriculture and feed associations in refining and improving their guidelines to keep pace with new research advances, the alliance continued. These guidelines affect meat, dairy, and poultry products found in most retail outlets, with some brands adding additional requirements.
The alliance brochure provides a summary of each program, as well as contact information for each organization. The brochure can be downloaded from the alliance Web site at www.animalagalliance.org under the Animal Welfare tab, and each individual program is featured on the relevant organization's Web site.