By Andrew Gunther
| December 28, 2011
As the year comes to an end, it’s a tradition of mine to write a note of gratitude to our friends, farmers and ranchers, consumers, advocates, donors, and everyone else who has helped give the future of sustainable farming room to grow and flourish.
And what a year it has been! Animal Welfare Approved has yet again experienced a fantastic year of growth and innovation, driven by the ever-increasing demand for healthy, environmentally friendly and high-welfare products. Here are some highlights of significant milestones we have achieved over the last year. None of this could have been achieved without your continued support.
By Animal Welfare Approved
| December 14, 2011
Kelley and Mark Escobedo of South Texas Heritage Pork raise hogs on 120 acres in South Texas. They began raising pigs in 2008 with the desire to provide better food for their family. Kelley and Mark purchased a pig that produced some of the best pork they had ever tasted and provided the peace of mind of knowing exactly what they were eating because they had complete control over what their animals were fed.
Famously, Carole Morison and her husband, Frank, walked away after more than two decades raising birds under contract for Perdue on Maryland’s Eastern Shore. Her decision earned her a starring role in the Academy Award-nominated documentary Food, Inc., in which she gave viewers an inside look at the industrial system and its negative impacts on animals and farmers.
Caleb Johnson raises Certified AWA pigs at AJ Family Farm in Garland, North Carolina. The pigs have constant access to outdoor pasture or range throughout their lives. This high-welfare management outdoors–a fundamental component of AWA’s farm standards–ensures the pigs have plenty of room to roam and demonstrate instinctive behaviors, such as rooting and foraging. Research shows that pasture-based management is better for animal welfare, better for the environment and better for human health.
Mary Fahey started Wise Acre Farm in 1997 when she purchased her first acreage in Arbuckle, CA. Although she had no prior background in farming, Mary had always kept an extensive vegetable garden as well as a variety of pets. Wise Acre Farm began as a small market garden and CSA and has now grown to over 20 acres producing a variety of fruits and vegetables, almonds and Animal Welfare Approved pastured eggs.