FAQs for consumers
The rearing method labelling scheme gives consumers an indication, if they want to know, of how the animals used to make a product were kept. They do not need to invest any money or time to be able to discover the animal welfare factor behind the respective product seals. The 4-tier ranking provides consumers with information about how much more animal welfare is in a product than is legally required at a glance.
However, the rearing method labelling scheme is not a label and so is not a new programme or inspection system. It classifies existing labels on a scale and thus gives a quick overview.
Questions about the labelling scheme
Each food retailer decides for itself how many products from which rearing method tier they want to sell.
Questions about programmes
The rearing method labelling scheme has defined minimum requirements and tiers that consumers can use as a quick guide with regards to animal welfare. Organic production covers other aspects that are important for many consumers. Consumers that also place value on organic factors in addition to animal welfare aspects can use the well-known organic seal to help them make their decision when buying meat products.
Questions about the criteria
The rearing method labelling scheme is a guide for consumers to help them better classify existing programmes and standards with animal rearing requirements. The rearing method criteria are presented in a transparent manner and serve as a framework for the different animal rearing requirements and the classification of programmes. A range of different experts from the sector were involved in developing the criteria.
For now, the rearing method labelling scheme only applies to the fattening period.
The rearing method labelling scheme is not a standard in itself. As such, it is currently the task of the different standards and programmes to work together with economic operators and politicians to come up with a solution. Once a practicable approach has been found, then can we enforce such a requirement.
Participation in antibiotics monitoring is a minimum requirement for all four tiers. However, a blanket ban on antibiotic use would not be beneficial to the animals. In fact, a vital aspect of animal protection is a correct use of antibiotics and as such this is a central requirement for all participants – including farmers.