6 March 2010
West Australian free-range chicken producer Mt Barker has become Australia’s first chicken farm to join the RSPCA’s Approved farming Scheme.
461 million chickens are produced in Australia every year. RSPCA Approved Farming aims to get as many of those chickens as possible out of conventional systems and onto farms that better meet their behavioural and welfare needs.
"Mt Barker is a leader in its industry and in animal welfare and the RSPCA is delighted to have them on board as our first chicken meat producer," said RSPCA Australia President Lynne Bradshaw.
"We’re also pleased to announce that RSPCA Approved Mt Barker Free Range turkeys will hit the supermarket shelves just in time for Christmas."
Mt Barker General Manager Mark Rintoul said becoming RSPCA Approved was the next logical step for the company, which enjoys a strong reputation in WA as a producer and supplier of humane food.
"We joined the RSPCA Approved Farming Scheme because we wanted someone independent; an organisation with a reputation that our consumers trusted," said Mr Rintoul.
"We wanted credible certification that could give that extra assurance that what we are doing is good quality farming and that our chickens are true free-range and enjoy a more natural life."
Top Chef Russell Blaikie only uses Mt Barker free-range chicken and will be providing a smorgasbord of culinary treats for tomorrow’s official launch at renowned Perth wine bar, MUST.
"Food provenance and the integrity of my suppliers and their production methods are at the core of my cooking. Serving food with a conscience, including humanely produced food, is key at MUST."