8th October, 2018| Animal Welfare

We work with a large number of European production partners and in each newsletter we will highlight one of our welfare partners. This time it’s the turn of Italian partner, Citterio.

Winterbotham Darby and Citterio have now been working together since 2007 and in that time have developed a fantastic partnership approach.

They have a group of farms who were working to standards higher than EU legislation, which were then identified and ring-fenced. Subsequently, even higher welfare standards have been Citterio logoimplemented.  Ensuring these standards are maintained is extremely important and so farms are independently audited on an annual basis and are committed to becoming EFP (pig module) certified by the end of 2019.

For Citterio the welfare priorities are:

  • eliminating confinement
  • reducing surgical procedures
  • eliminating pain
  • providing extra space and an enriched environment

The scheme we run with them currently operates with three slaughter houses, four breeding farms and six rearing/finishing farms and across these farms they finish about 75,000 pigs a year.

Guido Bianco, Veterinarian Chief Health Officer, regularly visits the farms and works closely with the farmers to ensure a proactive approach to animal health and welfare.  He says:

We think that animal pain should be completely eliminated. It is important because animal welfare is the foundation of livestock on farms to be used for meat-processing.”

Progressing welfare

As a partner Citterio also collaborate with a number of other organisations, getting involved in trials and research. For example they have worked with University of Padua, to assist with the completion of the Tri-Solfen® trial (in conjunction with Medical Ethics) as well as the Swiss Federal Office for Animal Welfare.

Citterio believes in pain elimination for animals and endeavours to provide better conditions for animals during their life.

Commitment to learning

Guido Bianco and colleague Paola Vismara attend the Animal Health and Welfare Days hosted by Winterbotham Darby Bristol University on an annual basis, enabling them to learn more about developments in welfare and also giving them the opportunity to network with peers and delegates at the event.