Participating food retailers can add the relevant rearing method label and programme seal to products of animal origin. With suppliers, food retailers can regulate the labelling on the packaging or implement a corresponding display of Tiers 1 to 4 in the service counter. This way, consumers get more information about how the animals were reared.
Classifying animal welfare programmes in the rearing method labelling scheme
PROGRAMME REGISTRATION PROCESS
- The programme partner/standard setter must apply for the classification of a programme/standard via the Gesellschaft zur Förderung des Tierwohls in der Nutztierhaltung mbH.
- Before submitting their application, the applicant must ensure that their standard or programme meets all the minimum requirements of the desired rearing method tier. You can find a list of the minimum requirements here: https://www.haltungsform.de/kriterien-und-mindestanforderungen/
The application must be done by email and should contain the following information:
- The desired rearing method tier that the standard/programme should be classified as
- Name and logo (print version) of the standard/programme to be classified
- The criteria catalogue/guidelines of the standard/programme that apply to livestock owners (the requirements for the livestock owners must be described in enough detail to be auditable)
- The inspection system (checks carried out by neutral bodies, frequency of audits, consequences if requirements are not adhered to, checklists)
- A link to the applicant’s website (criteria catalogue and inspection system must be published online)
- The completed information sheet about the programme to be classified – you can find the information sheet HERE
- A list of food retailers where the products with the rearing method labelling will be sold
- The office of the Gesellschaft zur Förderung des Tierwohls in der Nutztierhaltung mbH then reviews the criteria catalogue with regards to the minimum requirements for the desired rearing method classification.
- It also checks to see whether the standard setter/programme partner already participates in the uniform rearing method labelling scheme. If they do not, the programme partner is then sent a participation agreement to sign.
- If the standard/programme fulfils all the requirements of the relevant rearing method tier and the standard setter/programme partner participates in the scheme, the office approves the standard/programme to use the rearing method labelling.
- All products that bear the seal of the standards and programmes listed under https://www.haltungsform.de/im-ueberblick/ can be labelled with the respective rearing method label by participating retailers.
- The standard setter/programme partner is obligated to inform the supporting organisation of any significant changes to the standard/programme in a timely manner.
Overview of the product labelling
LABELLING ON FROZEN AND SELF-SERVICE PRODUCTS
The labelling on self-service and frozen products provides greater transparency and safety for consumers and guarantees higher quality standards.
- When labelling products with the rearing method labels, care must be taken to ensure that the rearing method tier is always shown together with the logo of the classified animal welfare standard/programme on the packaging. The logo of the animal welfare standard/programme should be as close (on the same side of the packaging) to the rearing method label as possible (on self-service products).
- In exceptional cases, the logo and label can be placed on different sides of the packaging (request for approval must be sent to the office firstname.lastname@example.org).
- You can request the print data for the rearing method labelling scheme logo from the office by sending an email to email@example.com.
- When creating the packaging layout, please follow the specifications in the style guide (https://www.haltungsform.de/wp-content/uploads/Haltungsform-Styleguide.pdf).
- New packaging layouts that need to have the rearing method label must be sent to firstname.lastname@example.org for approval before it can be used.
- Approval is only required for a general layout, the packaging for each individual product does not need to be approved. Please attach a list of the products that would use this packaging layout to the email.
- For composite products, the layout for bottom labels must also be sent.
LABELLING IN THE SERVICE COUNTER
- Products in the service counter must also be labelled with their rearing method tier and the logo of the relevant animal welfare programme/standard.
- This can either be done directly on the product or with stands, posters in the counter, etc. You can find some examples in our style guide. https://www.haltungsform.de/wp-content/uploads/Haltungsform-Styleguide.pdf
- Please make sure that you also have your preferred labelling options for service counters approved in advance by the office.
F.A.Q. - Frequently Asked Questions
Questions from farmers
Farmers cannot participate directly. Farmers can get their farm certified by a registered programme so that their products sold later via retailers can be labelled with the rearing method labels.
For farmers, nothing will change. You can continue to decide which programmes to participate in for yourselves. If you want your products to have a rearing method label, you must participate in one of the registered programmes.
Questions about the labelling scheme
Can only food retailers that participate in the Animal Welfare Initiative (AWI) use the rearing method labelling scheme?
No, any food retailer that would like to use the “rearing method labelling scheme” can apply to participate via the Gesellschaft zur Förderung des Tierwohls in der Nutztierhaltung mbH. All participants are listed on the homepage https://www.haltungsform.de/en.
Interessierte Handelsunternehmen können sich über email@example.com zu den Teilnahmebedingungen informieren. Der weitere Prozess wird dann bilateral abgestimmt.
- Fresh unprocessed meat and fresh seasoned and marinated products
- Products made from chicken, turkey, beef and pork
- Fresh unprocessed meat and fresh seasoned and marinated products
- Frozen products and processed products, provided that the respective standard setter also allows the labelling of these products
- Products made from chicken, turkey, beef, pork, Pekin duck and rabbit
If a marketer or an abattoir can offer products from AWI farms but the retailer that sells the products does not participate in the AWI but does take part in the rearing method labelling scheme, can the retailer give the products a Tier 2 label?
No! In this case, the retailer must establish their own programme that meets the Tier 2 requirements. This programme must then be submitted to the supporting organisation for review and once it has been classified, the retailer can then advertise their products as Tier 2 in connection with the submitted programme.
How are the rearing method tiers determined for products that are made from more than one type of meat (e.g. mixed mincemeat)?
- If the product contains meat from two different species of animal from the same rearing method tier (e.g. organic minced beef and pork) then they can be labelled with the respective rearing method label like other fresh meat products.
- If the product contains meat from two different species of animal, such as mixed mincemeat or mixed stewing meat (containing both pork and beef), from two different rearing method tiers it will be labelled with the lower of the two rearing methods tiers.
- If a product contains meat from one species of animal but taken from different animals with different rearing method tiers, it will be labelled with the lowest tier.
- If the product contains some meat from a species of animal that cannot yet be given a rearing method label (e.g. lamb), the product can only be be given a label if additional information is added next to the rearing method label (e.g. not on the back of the packaging/in the ingredients list if the rearing method label is on the front of the packaging). This additional information must make it clear to consumers which part of the meat the label applies to.
Questions about programmes
You can find the latest classification of participating animal welfare programmes under “An overview of the rearing method tiers” here.
What proof of the rearing method must a retailer be able to provide so that a product can be classified into one of the rearing method tiers?
To ensure animal welfare programmes can be classified into the rearing method tiers, the participating retailers must apply for approval. To do this, they need to contact the Gesellschaft zur Förderung des Tierwohls in der Nutztierhaltung mbH with the following information:
- Classification of the programme in the corresponding rearing method tier
- Link to a publicly accessible website that lists the criteria and inspection system of the animal welfare programme that is to be classified
What does a standard setter/programme partner need to do to achieve a classification in one of the rearing method tiers?
The standard setter/programme partner must contact a retailer that is authorised to apply the labelling and provide the information listed above. The retailer will then use this information to apply for approval via the Gesellschaft zur Förderung des Tierwohls in der Nutztierhaltung mbH.