Waitrose Launches High-Welfare Dairy Programme
Waitrose is no longer to use factory-farmed dairy cows as a milk source, but rather, derive its milk from cows that graze outdoors at least 100 days per year, Mail.co.uk reports.
The move is a response borne out of pressure applied on supermarket chains to introduce grazing for dairy cows. Animal-rights groups have expressed concern regarding the absence of outdoor periods for cows, and the knock-on effects that such conditions have on their health.
Some 50 farms provide milk for Waitrose, and these are located in the counties Wiltshire, Berkshire, Dorset, Somerset, Devon, Oxfordshire, Gloucestershire and Buckinghamshire.
Waitrose’s director of agriculture, Heather Jenkins, said, "We’ve always required our farmers to graze their dairy herds outside, but this move puts in place a minimum benchmark of at least 100 days a year. Getting dairy cows outside and on grass pasture whenever possible not only produces great-quality milk, but is a key aspect of good animal welfare, something we believe is of the utmost importance."
Compassion in World Farming’s CEO Philip Lymbery said, "Waitrose delivers what its customers expect, and what the cows need to live a happier, healthier life."
© 2016 European Supermarket Magazine – your source for the latest retail news. Article by Peter Donnelly. To subscribe to ESM: The European Supermarket Magazine, click here.