Dairy Cows need your help…

Look carefully in the dairy area of your supermarkets and  you are likely to see many different egg products that are Certified Humane®.   Being Certified Humane® is a badge of honor for farmers and the grocers who sell their products.  They recognize it’s the right thing to do…. it’s also good business.

Two of the most common products in the supermarket dairy aisle are eggs and milk.  Despite the public’s increasing demand for animal products coming from animals produced humanely,  the vast majority of dairy farmers  have not felt the need to become Certified Humane®.  As a result, there are very few Certified Humane® dairy products and NO Certified Humane® milk products available in your grocer’s fridge.  Indeed, there are less than 25  cow dairy farms in the US that are certified by either Certified Humane® or Animal Welfare Approved®, the two animal welfare certification programs that have the highest standards and most rigorous and comprehensive inspection programs.

The most common explanation we’ve heard for the lack of Certified Humane® dairies is the belief of dairy farmers that the public doesn’t care.  “Where’s the demand?” we’ve heard from countless dairy farmers; supermarkets, too, are not hearing from consumers like you asking for them to supply Certified Humane® dairy products.

And they’re right – not enough consumers are making their voices heard about their desire for humanely raised dairy products.

I know that if milk producers thought the public wanted proof that they take proper care of their dairy cows and produce milk products under humane conditions — they would apply for certification.
Informed consumers want to know that the milk they provide for  their family came from cows which are not constrained in tie stalls and are free to move about,  are provided a healthy diet free from antibiotics and growth hormones like rBST,  and  are required to have access to the outdoors.  That’s what is required to be Certified Humane®.

So go to our Take Action Page to see all the ways you can help us get more dairy farmers on the program – you can download a dairy product request form here. When you go to your supermarket, hand in the request form to the grocery manager, or customer service desk.  Ask your friends and neighbors to do the same.   Let’s work together to let dairy farmers know that you do care about how dairy cows are treated.

13 responses to “Dairy Cows need your help…

  1. Michelle Storace

    How could you think that people are not interested in the type of care any animal receives ? People are lead to believe the lies they are told about how the animal are treated. The ABUSE MUST STOP NOW.

  2. Thank you Adele for this, I am a vegan but this is important!!! I have printed out copies of your form and will distribute at my local markets!
    Thank you, Mary Hulett

  3. Im am THRILLED to learn about you and all you do for animals. People think Im crazy when I tell them what these animals go thru, or they just dont care, even thought they claim to be animal lovers. BLESS YOU!

  4. Jane Ciarlone

    This is good to see. I am disgusted with my own government with regards to the way small farmers have been treated and how these huge factory farms are “in bed” with these people. These factory farms are hell on earth. Thank God for people like you.

  5. I am in full agreement!! This has to stop, we have put the farmers out of business and have turned our farms into cruel inhumane factories! And I will not spend my money or feed my family this evil so called food. Myself I will drink Almond or soy milk until it stops!!!! I will not buy evil eggs or meat. Lets all band together for the proper change. We are all Gods creation not heartless factory manufactured!!!!

  6. Will be passing along the forms.

  7. Is this true?? You allow beak cutting and an incredible degree of confinement for laying hens??

    “American Humane Certified: This label allows both cage confinement and cage-free systems. Each animal who is confined in these so-called “furnished cages” has about the space of a legal-sized sheet of paper. An abundance of scientific evidence demonstrates that these cages are detrimental to animal welfare, and they are opposed by nearly every major US and EU animal welfare group. Forced molting through starvation is prohibited, but beak cutting is allowed. Compliance is verified through third-party auditing. American Humane Certified is a program of American Humane Association.”

    • We are not American Humane Certified and we are not the American Humane Association. We do not approve any caged system, furnished or otherwise. We only approve cage free operations. We are Humane Farm Animal Care and our program is Certified Humane Raised and Handled. Adele

  8. The filth and degradation to life standards for farm animals can’;t be over come by using antibiotics and isolation P.ET.A. opened the door to Pandora’s box . While getting shot at by pig farmers in the Carolinas
    thank you; P.E.T.A.
    There must be a common sense accepted standard for all farm animals.

  9. I didn’t know about all of this (or maybe I didn’t want to know) but now that I do, I am thinking differently about our food.

  10. I believe Stephanie copied the wrong section. You did not address beak cutting–

    Certified Humane: The birds are uncaged inside barns or warehouses but may be kept indoors at all times. They must be able to perform natural behaviors such as nesting, perching, and dust bathing. There are requirements for stocking density and number of perches and nesting boxes. Forced molting through starvation is prohibited, but beak cutting is allowed. Compliance is verified through third-party auditing. Certified Humane is a program of Humane Farm Animal Care.

    • Hi Jennifer,

      I’m not sure exactly what this is referring to, or where you got the information about our program from. I don’t know what “beak cutting” is. De-beaking is prohibited by our program. Our laying hen standards allow beak trimming if it occurs before 10 days of age, and here is the reasoning behind that:

      In flocks of cage-free laying hens larger than 120 birds, there is a tendency towards feather pecking and cannibalism. Feather pecking is a natural behavior for birds (actually the source of the term “pecking order”), whereas cannibalism occurs when the birds attack another bird until it is dead. Most of the food production flocks are much larger than 120 birds, unless they are being raised by a backyard farmer or hobbyist.

      Beak trimming is performed on birds prior to 10 days of age. Our scientific committee developed this standard as a way to combat cannibalism in cage-free flocks while minimizing discomfort for the birds. There have been studies done which show that trimming just the tip of the beak at that age causes only momentary discomfort, with no long-term discomfort or ill effects. The birds are still able to use their beak in a full range of natural behaviors.

      There was also a study conducted which showed that in cage-free flocks with no beak trimming performed, upwards of 30% of the birds are cannibalized. Unfortunately, birds raised in cages are the least prone to cannibalism, but we do not believe that either of these situations encompasses good welfare.

      For more information and pictures of what a beak-trimmed bird looks like, please check out our fact sheets on beak trimming – you can download a copy here.

  11. I think there are 2 Jennifers! I am looking at the posts and I was like “wait a minute, I didn’t say that!” Thank you for this site it is very informative.

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