Humanely Raised

THE MEANING

Raspini Spa defines “humanely-raised” as referring to pigs that are raised on family farms in an environment that promotes natural behavior and socialization.

All raw material used for Raspini’s pork products featuring the “humanely-raised” claim is sourced exclusively from Danish Crown and raised according to the Contract for UK Production Standard (herein after “UK Standard”) and the All Natural Pork Raised without Antibiotics standard. The documentation, provided by Danish Crown, outlines in great detail the animal welfare standards applied to the pigs, from birth to harvest, as well as the control and compliance mechanisms in place to ensure that these standards are met by all breeding farms supplying pigs to Danish Crown under this standard.

Below you can find some specific highlights from the Danish Crown documentation in support of the terms used in the above definition (all numbered sections cited in parentheses below refer to the Contract for UK Production Standard document):

The pigs in the farm

RAISED ON FAMILY FARMS

All breeding farms participating in the UK Standard and supplying raw material for Raspini’s meat products featuring the “humanely raised” claim are family-owned and operated.

AN ENVIRONMENT THAT PROMOTES NATURAL BEHAVIOR

Regular cleaning of the premises on the breeding farms contributes to a comfortable environment and deters the presence of flies and vermin. Indoor pens are configured so as to provide access to sufficient quantities of straw or comparable material to satisfy the need for rooting. In addition, access to either natural light or sufficient artificial light must be provided for at least 8 hours a day. A sprinkling or misting system, as well as a ventilation system, are provided in almost all cases to allow pigs to regulate their body temperature.

Outdoor pens are also arranged to meet the pigs’ temperature requirements. In particular, larger pigs must have access to either a wallow or a sprinkling/misting system when the weather is warm. Lying areas must be covered with straw or comparable materials and be dry and warm in all weather conditions.

Tail docking and the removal of the sharp points of the eye teeth of piglets by grinding is done only when necessary and in the very first days after birth.

The stress-free environment extends to the movement of pigs within the breeding farms, which must always be done considerately. Transport of live pigs is conducted in vehicles designed to prevent suffering and injury, and protected from weather. In addition, transport is limited to no more than 8 hours, except in special vehicles equipped with ventilation and water systems.

Pregnant sows are provided with additional space and are placed in farrowing shelters at least seven days prior to expected date of farrowing. They are to be loosely housed at all times and be provided with free access stalls of their own.

Boar pens are constructed so as to allow the animal to turn around without difficulty and so the boar may see, smell and hear other pigs. These pens must meet minimum size requirements and are to be kept clean, dry and comfortable.

Pigs aged over 14 days are allowed to freely access sufficient clean and fresh drinking water at all times.

In addition, health monitoring is part of each breeding farm’s self-audit program, which is overseen by a veterinarian. To preserve the welfare of the herd, pigs that become ill are treated with medicine and identified through ear tags or by being placed in a separate pen. They are treated immediately and, if necessary, humanely put down.

little pig

AN ENVIRONMENT THAT PROMOTES SOCIALIZATION

In an effort to provide an environment that promotes positive socialization, pigs that exhibit aggressive behavior are either temporarily isolated or removed from the herd. In addition, sows and gilts are kept separately, in groups, from weaning until seven days before farrowing.

To facilitate movement, the interior of buildings and all flooring is built so that there are no sharp edges, thus preventing distress and even injuries. Lying areas are kept clean, dry and comfortable.

Piglets must not be weaned at less than 28 days of age. The exception: they may be weaned at 21 days if moved into special housing units that are cleaned and disinfected between batches.

Pigs are kept in stable groups throughout their life.

THE CONTROLS

Danish Crown has an auditing system in place to ensure the validity of this claim and that all the elements highlighted in Raspini SpA’s definition of “humanely-raised” are implemented by farms involved in the UK Standard and the All Natural Pork Raised without Antibiotics standard.