This is a draft cheat sheet. It is a work in progress and is not finished yet.
The 5-Step Animal Welfare Rating Program promotes and facilitates continuous improvement in animal agriculture, encourages animal welfare friendly farming practices, and better informs consumers about the animal farming systems they choose to support. It is a certification program developed by the Global Animal Partnership, to change the landscape of animal agriculture through a positive, rewarding, multi-stakeholder approach.
Who Is Global Animal Partnership? An international nonprofit charitable organization founded in 2008 with the primary mission of facilitating and encouraging continuous improvement and higher welfare in animal agriculture, principally through its signature program—the 5-Step Animal Welfare Rating Standards.
What Is the 5-Step Animal Welfare Rating Program?
• The 5-Step Animal Welfare Rating program is a multi-tiered system that, designed to promote continuous improvement in animal agriculture.
• Each set of tiered standards (Steps) has its own requirements for each particular Step level. Each Step Rating has its own distinct label to affix on products to identify the particular Step level achieved.
• The 5-Step Animal Welfare Rating Standards:
Inspires producers to move up the welfare ladder;
Enables engagement with a broad spectrum of farmers and ranchers, rather than a minority segment of a niche agricultural community;
Allows for greater product supply of higher welfare offerings for expanded consumer options;
More accurately and justly rewards and recognizes producers for their specific welfare practices;
Encourages innovation by farmers and ranchers, and
Better informs consumers about the production systems they may choose to support.
• Independent, third-party certification companies conduct the audits and verification in accordance to the 5-Step standards. Using third parties, Global Animal Partnership is best positioned to remain objective and maintain the integrity of the 5-Step program.
A multi-tiered Animal Welfare Standards provides a unique approach to farm animal welfare certification. Each set of Animal Welfare Standards—from Step 1 to Step 5+—has its own requirements that must be met before a farm can be certified. The main emphasis of the standards is taking an animal-centered approach – looking at what the animals are showing us through their physical condition and their behavior.
Step 1 - No Cages, No crates, No crowding
Step 2 - Enriched environment
Step 3 - Enhanced Outdoor access
Step 4 – Pasture centered
Step 5 – Animal centered, Physical alterations prohibited
Step 5+ - Animals live entire life on integrated farm
Benefits of The 5-Step Animal Welfare Program
Provides transparency for consumers on animal production systems
Encourages and support farmers and rancher to move up the animal welfare ladder
Recognizes producers for their commitment to animal welfare practices
Offers a wider variety of products to consumers and retailers