Centre for Rural Economy


Animal Welfare in the Product Quality Chain

Welfare quality was an integrated EU funded project organised in 9 subprojects involving 40 academic institutions across Europe.

The CRE team, Guy Garrod, Michael Bourlakis and Carmen Hubbard, were involved in Work Package 1.3, which has as its main objective the identification of potential barriers/obstacles that farmers faced to produce under higher standards of animal welfare. To achieve this, three case studies (pig, cattle and poultry producers) were carried out using face-to-face interviews. Farmers from the most important UK farm assurance schemes (e.g. British Farm Standard, Freedom Food and Soil Association) and farmers who did not belong to any assurance scheme were selected to participate in this exercise. The interview focused mainly on farmers’ motivation for participating/not participating in farm assurance schemes, farmers’ understanding of the animal welfare concept and the way they assessed the welfare of their animals, animal welfare legislation, monitoring and inspection, transport of animals and farmers’ perception about consumers and retailers. Our partners in this project were: Rural Sociology Group, Wageningen University, the Netherlands; Department of Human Ecology, Goteborg University, Sweden; Institute de l’Elevage, France; Centro Ricerche Produzioni Animali, Italy and the Norwegian Agricultural Economics Research Institute.