There is a growing and justifiable concern amongst many global consumers that animal, and animal-based products, are produced in accordance with minimum acceptable standards to protect both humans and animals.
The principles of animal welfare known as the ‘Five Freedoms of Animal Welfare’ set by the UK Farm Animal Welfare Council demand that animals are guaranteed the following:
- Freedom from thirst, hunger and malnutrition - by ready access to fresh water and a diet to maintain full health and vigor.
- Freedom from discomfort - by providing a suitable environment including shelter and a comfortable resting area.
- Freedom from pain, injury and disease - by prevention or rapid diagnosis and treatment.
- Freedom to express normal behavior - by providing sufficient space, proper facilities and company of the animal’s own kind.
- Freedom from fear and distress - by ensuring conditions that avoid mental suffering.
The Group companies involved in animal production are Irvine’s (chicken), Colcom (pigs), AMP Meats (cattle), Mafuro Farming (dairy cattle), PHI (cattle), as well as National Foods and Profeeds, who both produce animal feed. Irvine’s and Colcom have stringent animal welfare programs in place.