Animal Welfare Revolution Continues In Economic Recovery
Farm animal welfare remains a priority for British shoppers; according to this report, a record-breaking 532 million farm animals are now reared under the RSPCA’s higher welfare standards, representing a 46% increase since 2008.
Preliminary data from the current year also shows the trend toward higher welfare animal foods is likely to continue into 2010. In January, 19% of shoppers said that animal welfare influenced their shopping decisions, a clear increase from the 10% who said similarly in 2006.
The number of farm animals raised under these higher welfare programs jumped from 532 million at the end of 2008 to 363 million at the end of 2009, including 170 million additional animals over the last year. The types of animals seeing the most number of individuals affected include salmon, increasing from 281 million fish in 2008 to 440 million in 2009, an increase of 56% to now total 60% of total Scottish salmon production.
The number of pigs raised under the standards grew 23% from 1.6 million in 2008 to over 1.9 million in 2009, accounting for 20% of UK production. The number of ducks covered by these higher standards also increased by 84%, now comprising about 42% of all UK production. Other increases occurred in turkeys (by 17% to now comprise 7% of UK production) and chicken (by 9% to now comprise 7% of UK production).