November 11, 2015
As debates around food and its production have developed the RSPCA has sought to keep the welfare of animals reared for food central to those discussions. We continue to engage with all stakeholders in Wales regarding the welfare of farmed animals and how this can be delivered to consumers.
The RSPCA believes that the Welsh Government’s food strategy should ensure that quality is synonymous with higher welfare and we would like to see greater coordination between animal welfare policy developments and those surrounding food in Wales. The RSPCA is also engaged with the development of food labelling in Wales, UK, EU and WTO levels and supports the introduction of labels associated with provenance provided there are clear, sufficient and enforced animal welfare standards underpinning any such label.
RSPCA Assured, formerly Freedom Food, is the RSPCA’s farm assurance and food labelling scheme. This scheme has gone from strength to strength since its launch in 1994 and details of the scheme as well as the products available and the standards required can be found here. It is the only scheme dedicated to animal welfare and covers the producer, haulier and abattoir.
In a historic move the National Assembly for Wales became the first legislature in the UK to switch solely to Freedom Food eggs and salmon in 2010 which was supported by 81% of the staff, civil servants and Assembly Members working within the estate. In addition to expanding the Freedom Food products on the Assembly’s menu we would urge the Welsh Government, Local Authorities and major corporations to lead the way in Wales in sourcing higher welfare products.