ANIMAL WELFARE IS A MAJOR PRIORITY
The scope of our animal welfare QA department is extremely broad – after all, animal welfare is a major priority for us at Naturland, from the first breath to the last.
EXTENSIVE ANIMAL WELFARE REQUIREMENTS
At Naturland, we have set rules for our animals from birth and rearing through to transportation and slaughter. To ensure compliance with our numerous animal welfare requirements, we commission inspections by independent organic inspection bodies. An inspection is carried out on all Naturland livestock farms at least once a year – some pre-announced, some not. They cover the following areas, among others: Nutrition and care status, animal health, number of losses, slaughter reports, feed and water supplies, and housing, yard and pasture conditions. This enables inspectors to closely examine the animals and determine their overall welfare. They also inspect the environment in which the animals are kept.
The inspection results are evaluated by our animal welfare QA department. If anything appears conspicuous, the livestock owners are urged to improve the animals’ situation as soon as possible in consultation with Naturland's expert advisers. If clear abnormalities are detected, we can impose sanctions against the farm or even terminate their membership. Inspections are also carried out at each medium-sized and larger abattoir where Naturland animals are slaughtered.
Another core responsibility of our animal welfare QA department is to deliver theoretical and practical training to our inspectors so that they can detect any illness in animals as quickly and reliably as possible.
Naturland's animal welfare QA department collaborates with three other organic associations – Bioland, Biokreis and GÄA – on developing training courses and on expanding and improving the inspection scheme as part of the Animal Welfare Alliance (Arbeitsgemeinschaft Tierwohl).
The animal welfare QA department summarises the animal welfare inspections results across all four associations and analyses them to determine areas improvement.
KNOWLEDGE EXCHANGE THROUGH NETWORKING
Our animal welfare QA department also works with industry partners in other areas. It works with scientists to implement animal welfare improvement projects in agriculture and attends congresses and conferences to facilitate a regular dialogue on current industry topics. The department also collaborates with the animal welfare organisation PROVIEH on important animal welfare topics.
Our animal welfare QA team also travels to farms and abattoirs in person to gain insights beyond the commissioned inspections and to keep in touch with Naturland livestock owners, for example. What's more, our animal welfare QA team attends round table events and “Stable Schools” (on-farm, peer-to-peer workshops) to discuss the specific challenges of welfare-orientated livestock farming.