Tulip awarded top animal welfare ranking

Tulip has been awarded the highest rating for its animal welfare standards, under the global ‘Business Benchmark on Farm Animal Welfare’ (BBFAW).

The Tier 1 ranking followed an independent assessment by BBFAW that was privately commissioned by Tulip. It shows the company has taken a ‘leadership position on farm animal welfare’.

However, Tulip’s assessment did not form part of the global BBFAW 2019 Benchmark, so it will not appear on the list of 150 global companies audited.

But Tulip said the independent assessment measured it against exactly the same criteria used in the 2019 global Business Benchmark, which is supported by Compassion in World Farming and World Animal Protection.

“The results confirm Tulip’s position as a leader in farm animal welfare as both a food processor and pig producer and coincides with the 40th anniversary of BQP – Tulip’s in-house 100% higher welfare agricultural operation,” Tulip said.

Tulip, now owned by JBS-Pilgrim’s pride, is the UK’s biggest integrated pig producer and processor. All pigs produced within its own farming division are produced to higher welfare standards and RSPCA Assured, while all pigs independently supplied to Tulip via third party producers are a minimum of Red Tractor or Quality Meat Scotland assured, with some also meeting the RSPCA Assured standard.

BBFAW is the leading measure of company performance on farm animal welfare, looking at published evidence of animal welfare management, policy commitment, performance and reporting.

The results of the 2019 audit will be published in April. The 2018 global rankings saw Cranswick ranked in the top tier alongside Noble Foods and retailers, the Co-op, Marks & Spencer and Waitrose.

Tulip’s owner then, Danish Crown, was ranked in the third tier, along with Brazilian company, JBS, which owns Pilgrim’s Pride, the US company that acquired Tulip last year.

Nicky Amos, BBFAW Executive Director, commented, “This privately commissioned assessment highlights the considerable efforts being made by Tulip Ltd to both integrate farm animal welfare into its business strategy and to use its influence to drive up welfare standards within the industry. We congratulate Tulip on this achievement.”

Andrew Saunders, Tulip’s agriculture director, said: “We always strive to ensure we are leading the way in higher animal welfare standards and this independent assessment by the BBFAW is a major affirmation of our hard work. We’re the largest pig farmer and producer of higher welfare pork in the UK so this an important recognition of our commitment to upholding standards and driving innovation in animal welfare.

“We collaborate closely with leading industry bodies, councils and working groups to support initiatives that drive improvements in animal welfare.

“Current projects are focused on improving pig health and welfare, with specific projects including examining pig behaviour and improving pig accommodation at farm and processing facilities to maximise pig well-being.”

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Editor of LBM titles Pig World and Farm Business and group editor of Agronomist and Arable Farmer. National Pig Association's webmaster. Previously political editor at Farmers Guardian for many years and also worked Farmers Weekly. Occasional farming media pundit. Brought up on a Leicestershire farm, now work from a shed in the garden in Oxfordshire. Big fan of Leicester City and Leicester Tigers. Occasional cricketer.