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New Zealand Shoppers- Demand Blue Tick Accredited Products

For Immediate Release
Message to New Zealand Shoppers – “Demand Blue Tick Accredited Products”

Following ongoing concerns surrounding the issue of animal welfare in farming, particularly in the layer and broiler chicken sectors, the RNZSPCA is now asking consumers to purchase only eggs, pork, turkey and chicken that have been Accredited by the Blue Tick Programme and which carry the Blue Tick Mark.

The RNZSPCA describe The Blue Tick Programme as a “Label you can Trust”. It is the only label that guarantees that strict animal welfare standards have been applied to each step in farming process. The role of the Blue Tick Programme is to provide an Accreditation process which allows consumers to enjoy a high level of trust in their chosen products.

Blue Tick is a certification programme run by the Royal New Zealand SPCA. It has 118 members who are Producers and Distributors in the Eggs, Chicken, Turkey and Pork Industries and it continues to grow. It certifies animal products that "are farmed to our high welfare standards".

Whilst standards in this Sector still require further development, the current Standards for each of these Categories typically exceed the minimum Standards in the various Codes of Welfare. However, the term "Free Range" is lacking in a specific and precise meaning, the Blue Tick Programme, itself under constant review and development, remains the only truly independent and third party audited, Accreditation Scheme.

The scheme started by certifying eggs in 2001 and then added pork products in 2009. In 2011 it added standards for meat poultry chicken and in 2012 added turkey standards.

National CEO of the RNZSPCA, Ric Odom, commented that “Consumers can play a very significant role in addressing animal welfare and humane farming issues by searching out and insisting on the exclusive supply of Blue Tick Accredited Products”.

Odom said “Now that the recent free range issue has come to the fore once again, we have a very real opportunity to partner with consumers to say “Enough is enough” and, through their purchasing behaviours, to effectively ensure that only Blue Tick Accredited Products are stocked by retailers”.

Odom added “And given the confusion that has been predicated in recent editorial coverage, here at the RNZSPCA we are actively engaged in further developing, alongside our partners AsureQuality, the standards and processes designed to ensure that our mark remains, and further improves as, the only truly independent and fully trustworthy assurance of humane farming”.

-ends-

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