Target: Ric Odom, CEO of the Royal New Zealand Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals
Goal: Thank the RNZSPCA for improving standards on pig farms and giving consumers more humane food options
The Royal New Zealand Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals (RNZSPCA) has established a new program that will not only improve animal welfare standards on pig farms, but will also allow consumers to confidently buy humanely farmed pork products. This new certification is expected to be the beginning of a move toward much stronger laws across the country and deserves our gratitude.
The program, called Blue Tick, certifies farms who meet the RNZSPCA’s requirements, which are much more stringent than the law requires. “Our own Blue Tick programme sets the bar higher for the humane treatment of farm animals—including pigs, chickens, and turkeys—and is independently audited by AsureQuality” said RNZSPCA CEO Ric Odom. “We work with 25 Blue Tick accredited pig farms throughout New Zealand to ensure that they continue to meet our very high standards of animal welfare, ethical farming, and food quality.”
Requirements include phasing out stalls and crates and animal testing. Said Odom, “Dry sow stalls and farrowing crates are used on many pig farms to confine female pigs during various stages of pregnancy, often for weeks at a time. The devices are so small the pigs can’t turn around or exhibit natural behaviours. This is unacceptable from an animal welfare standpoint, which is why these devices are not permitted on Blue Tick accredited farms.”
The group hopes that these stalls and crates will be made illegal by the end of 2015. They are also pushing for changes to the Animal Welfare Amendment that would put an end to the use of animals in research and testing, including cosmetics, medicine, and recreational drugs, and begin to integrate non-animal models. Though the changes will be difficult and won’t meet all of their demands, the RNZSPCA feels good about the fact that their Blue Tick program will give consumers the ability to choose their higher standards in the meantime.
Please sign the petition below and thank the RNZSPCA for going beyond the law to improve the lives of farm animals.
Dear Mr. Odom,
The Royal New Zealand Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals recently established a new program known as Blue Tick that provides certifications for pig farms that meet much higher animal welfare standards, ultimately giving consumers more humane food options. You are also pushing for changes to the Animal Welfare Amendment that would pass these higher standards into law and end animal testing in cases when it isn’t absolutely necessary.
Thank you for not only protecting the lives of farm animals, but also for finding ways to make pig farms more humane even when the law doesn’t require it.
[Your Name Here]
Photo credit: Roxnstix via Flickr