Animal Welfare Approved

Archive for December, 2009

Happy Holidays from AWA!

By Animal Welfare Approved | December 23, 2009

We wish you and your families a happy holiday season.

As another season of farming and caring for their animals and land draws to a close, we would like to offer a sincere thank you to the visionary farmers in our program who provide us with better food raised a better way. We are only as strong as our farmers and they are an amazing group!

To the people who support them, and to everyone working to create a better food system for the mutual benefit of our shared environment, farm animals, and ultimately for ourselves, we offer our thanks for your dedication and encouragement.

To our Facebook Fans

By Animal Welfare Approved | December 18, 2009

Facebook is a forum for us to communicate with our friends and supporters and sometimes to engage in respectful debate. We are pleased that so many of you have become our “fans.”

It is becoming increasingly difficult not to want to delete posts that are insulting or hurtful to the farmers in our program, many of whom are also fans of our Facebook page.

Part of what we do on Facebook is share facts that will allow consumers to make informed choices. We are a program promoting high-welfare meat, dairy and eggs. We have a strong following of people who choose to consume these products, but want to assure that the animals were raised with positive welfare. These consumers understand that these products are safer, healthier and ultimately better for the farmers, animals and the environment.

Poplin Farms Inc. – Albemarle, NC

By Animal Welfare Approved | December 16, 2009

Shane Poplin raises Animal Welfare Approved beef cattle on Poplin Farm Inc., in Albemarle, NC. Shane’s farm in Abermarle has been in the family for three generations. His steers are born and raised on the farm eating 100% grass pasture, hay, and alfalfa silage. He also practices rotational grazing so that his steers always have the best access to quality hays and forage. At Poplin Farms, beef cattle do not receive any grain, growth hormones or unnecessary antibiotics and have abundant access to fresh water, minerals and salt that are necessary for a well-balanced diet.

High Ground Farm – Holly Spring, NC

By Animal Welfare Approved |

As a farmer, an artist, and a steward of the land, Deborah Underwood of High Ground Farm is committed to bringing a high-quality product to the table. A sustainable 17-acre organic farm, High Ground promotes the Java Chicken breed through excellent care, breed management, and raising awareness of this endangered homestead chicken. 145 Java and Welsumer hens roam comfortably on a four acre pasture of open grass and woodlands.

Baker’s Acres – Ellsinore, MO

By Animal Welfare Approved |

Edward Baker raises Animal Welfare Approved Angus beef cattle on 3000 acres in the hilly land around Ellsinore, Missouri. Edward was raised on a farm just 35 miles north in Ellington that raised hogs, horses and cattle.

Putting Trust on the Menu

By Animal Welfare Approved | December 9, 2009

Whether restaurant fare at farm-to-fork eateries really is sourced from sustainable family farmers is the subject of a recent Washington Post article by food writer Jane Black. Chefs have long been some of the most committed supporters of farmers using sustainable, high-welfare practices. AWA farmers have forged strong relationships with dedicated chefs such as Andrea Reusing of Chapel Hill, NC, Manhattan’s Bill Telepan and Top Chef contestant Bryan Voltaggio. However, as the terms “sustainable,” “family farmer,” and “humane” become part of the marketing lexicon, the chances of a menu being greenwashed rises.

Luckily, there is one simple step all restaurants highlighting their ties to farmers and sustainability can take to make sure patrons feel a sense of trust in the menu and the mission. They can be transparent. Much like the nutrition labels that now appear on packaged food, restaurants should spell out on their websites and menus what production practices they tolerate (raised in confinement? pesticide use?) and how they determine if a farm or supplier meets its standards.

Find AWA Grassfed Beef and Pastured Pork at 130 Whole Foods Market locations

By Animal Welfare Approved | December 7, 2009

In response to many ongoing requests asking whether Animal Welfare Approved products are available in Whole Foods Market stores, the answer is YES!

This holiday season, in addition to purchasing your AWA meat directly from the farm, CSA, farmers’ markets, co-ops, or buying clubs, you can shop at more than 130 Whole Foods Market locations and find Animal Welfare Approved grassfed beef and pastured pork products.

While Animal Welfare Approved farmers supply numerous Whole Foods Market locations, typically it has been difficult for consumers to find Animal Welfare Approved products at these stores because most AWA products will lack the familiar AWA label. And since Whole Foods Market stores offer a variety of meat products from a host of different sources, consumers need to ask for Animal Welfare Approved products by the specific farm or farm group where the animals were raised on pasture or range.