Author Archives: Diana Dietz

THE SCIENCE AND PRACTICE OF HIGH WELFARE SLAUGHTER – TRAINING AVAILABLE

2131890e-598b-49f7-ae51-66a6c7f2c69bRALEIGH, NC (January 27, 2017)–Animal Welfare Approved (AWA) is pleased to announce that the world renowned Bristol University is coming to the U.S. to carry out a series of two-day welfare trainings for slaughter plants. The training events are organized through a partnership between AWA and Bristol University in Langford, UK, and are part of an ongoing commitment to facilitate training in all aspects of high-welfare livestock production.
Two courses will be available: one aimed at plants handling red meat species on March 7-8, 2017 and the other for poultry on March 9-10, 2017. The courses will appeal to plant owners and operators who are looking to further demonstrate their commitment to animal welfare and their understanding of the science behind the slaughter process–and improve the quality of their final product.  The courses will cover:
  • Animal behavior, consciousness and sensibility, and stress in animals
  • Practical aspects of handling and restraining animals
  • Practical aspects of stunning techniques and knowledge of manufacturers’ instructions on the type of stunning equipment used
  • Monitoring the effectiveness of stunning and the absence of signs of life
  • Back-up stunning and/or killing methods
  • Appropriate use and maintenance of bleeding knives
Attendees who successfully complete the courses will qualify as an Animal Welfare Officer (AWO) or Poultry Welfare Officer (PWO).  The course normally costs $750 per attendee, per course; however, AWA is pleased to offer a limited number of applicants the introductory rate of $350 per course–or $700 for both courses. Scholarships may be available to plants already working with AWA–please inquire for details.
For further information about the course contact info@agreenerworld.org or call 202-546-5292.
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ABOUT A GREENER WORLD
A Greener World (AGW) identifies, audits, certifies and promotes practical, sustainable farming systems by supporting farmers and ranchers and informing consumers. AGW’s growing family of trusted certifications includes Certified Animal Welfare Approved by AGWCertified Grassfed by AGW and Certified Non-GMO by AGW. Each program is designed to have positive and measurable impacts on the environment, society and animals, and to encourage truly sustainable farming practices. AGW’s standards and procedures are robust, transparent and achievable.A nonprofit funded by public donations, A Greener World offers a range of resources to help people make informed food choices, including an Online Directory of certified farms and products and Food Labels Exposed–a definitive guide to food label claims (available in print, online, and as a smartphone app). For more information visit agreenerworld.org.ABOUT ANIMAL WELFARE APPROVED
Animal Welfare Approved certifies and supports farmers raising their animals according to the highest welfare standards, outdoors on pasture or range. Consumer Reports has acknowledged Animal Welfare Approved as the only “highly meaningful” label for farm animal welfare, outdoor access and sustainability. All standards, policies and procedures are available on the AWA website, which along with AWA’s ISO 17065 accreditation demonstrates the highest level of transparency and accountability.

Animal Welfare Approved is a program of A Greener World, the nonprofit home of America’s leading food labels. AGW’s Online Directory of farms, restaurants and products enables the public to search for certified farms, restaurants and products by zip code, keywords, products and type of establishment. For more information visit animalwelfareapproved.us and agreenerworld.org.

Iowa State’s Cordray, Sebranek Named to Meat Industry Hall of Fame

Dr. Joe Sebranek, and Dr. Joe Cordray
Dr. Joe Sebranek, and Dr. Joe Cordray

Two Iowa State University professors have been named 2016 inductees to the national Meat Industry Hall of Fame.

Joseph Cordray and Joseph Sebranek, professors in the Department of Animal Science, were honored last night, along with five other industry leaders, at the International Production and Processing Expo (IPPE17) in Atlanta, Georgia.

Dr. Cordray, who has a PhD in meat science from Auburn University, has spent the last 20 years as Professor-in-Charge of the Iowa State Meat Laboratory and its extension courses. Dr. Cordray, a long-time member of AAMP, has also served for more than a decade as an American Cured Meats Championship Technical Advisor.

Dr. Sebranek, who has a PhD in meat science from the University of Wisconsin-Madison, has been engaged since 1975 in teaching, extension, and research at Iowa State involving processed and cured meats. Dr. Sebranek was named a Distinguished Professor in 2008.

The Meat Industry Hall of Fame was founded in 2008 and currently has 77 members, including Dave Thomas, Frank Perdue, Ray Kroc, Don Tyson, and Jimmy Dean. To be nominated for membership, candidates must have “contributed significant innovation, achieved notable business success or otherwise positively impacted their organization, institutions or larger industry segment” and also have “undertaken noteworthy community service.”

AAMP congratulates Dr. Cordray and Dr. Sebranek for this great accomplishment.

AAMP Remembers Jim Peterson

PetersonLong-time AAMP member James Larry Peterson, age 71, passed away on Sunday, January 22, 2017 at the rehab at Good Samaritan Society-Lodi, in Lodi, WI. He was born on September 1, 1945, the son of Lawrence and Eunice (Thompson) Peterson, Fairview, Wisconsin.

Jim graduated high school in Richland Center. Jim and his wife Mary were united in marriage on March 23, 1973 in Lodi, Wisconsin. In 1964, Jim purchased the Lodi Locker Market and during the next 25 years he expanded the business and developed new products. Jim sold the Locker Market in 1989 and accepted a position in sales and technical service with Alkar-Rapid Pak Inc.

Jim was very active in the the American Association of Meat Processors, serving multiple times as a director and on several committees. AAMP honored Jim as its 4th inductee into the ‘Cured Meats Hall of Fame’ in 1997 and with its highest honor, ‘The Outstanding Service Award’, in 2006. In an excerpt from the introductory speech by Steve Krut, AAMP’s former executive director, Krut said, “Jim may be the single most honored person in the history of AAMP.” He attended nearly every national and state association convention. Jim served for decades on the board of the Wisconsin Association of Meat Processors and is a member of the University of Wisconsin-Madison’s Meat Industry Hall of Fame

Jim was known as “The Sausage King”. Jim was in the Army and active in the Lodi American Legion Post #216. He was a member of First Lutheran Church of Lodi. He was a Badger Booster, a hunter and collected antique fishing lures.

Jim is survived by his daughter, Megan (fiancé Joe); sister, Connie and numerous nieces, nephews and other family members. He was preceded in death by his wife, Mary and his mother and father. Funeral Services will be held at FIRST LUTHERAN CHURCH, 206 Pleasant St., Lodi, at 3 p.m. on Sunday, January 29, 2017 with Pastor Mike Lee presiding. Burial will be in Mt. Pleasant Cemetery.  Visitation will be held at the GUNDERSON LODI FUNERAL HOME, 157 S. Main St., Lodi from 4 p.m. to 7 p.m. on Saturday, January 28, 2017 and again on Sunday from 2 p.m. until the time of the service at the church.

Memorials may be made to First Lutheran Church in Lodi or the Lodi American Legion Post #216. Online condolences may be made at www.gundersonfh.com.

Gunderson Lodi
Funeral & Cremation Care
157 S. Main Street
(608)592-3201

BioSafe Systems to Exhibit at IPPE 2017

BioSafeEAST HARTFORD, Connecticut – BioSafe will be exhibiting at the 2017 International Production & Processing Expo Jan. 31-Feb. 2 in Atlanta, Georgia.

Booth #B3965 will be manned by seasoned staff VP of Food Safety, Russell Owings and Technical Sales Representative, Michael Applewhite. As experts in their fields, these two know all the ins and outs of the poultry market – spanning everything from eggs and animal health to slaughter and processing.

BioSafe is one of the largest manufacturers of peroxyacetic acid (PAA) in North America providing sustainable disease control products to the Agriculture, Horticulture, Post-Harvest/Food Safety, Meat and Poultry, Aquatics, Home & Garden, Turf, and Commercial/Industrial Sanitation industries.

Russell Owings
VP of Food Safety
540-256-8426
rowings@biosafesystems.com

Michael Applewhite
Technical Service Representative
256-677-2802
mapplewhite@biosafesystems.com

For questions about this press release please call 888-273-3088

FSIS Notice on Humane Handling and Slaughter – Is it Worth the Hassle?

CowsBy Chris Young, Executive Director

ASSESSMENT AND VERIFICATION REVIEWS OF AN OFFICIAL LIVESTOCK ESTABLISHMENT’S ROBUST SYSTEMATIC APPROACH PLAN FOR HUMANE HANDLING AND SLAUGHTER
This notice provides instructions to FSIS Public Health Veterinarians (PHVs), inspection program personnel (IPP) and District Veterinary Medical Specialists (DVMSs) about assessing and informing official livestock establishments whether their written systematic approach for humane handling and slaughter meets the criteria for being a robust plan or not. This notice also indicates the expected frequency for PHV and DVMS verification reviews of an existing robust systematic approach to humane handling and slaughter.
In 2004, FSIS recommended that establishments develop and implement a systematic approach for humanely handling and slaughtering livestock by effectively addressing the four aspects of a systematic approach; those are: assessment, design, evaluation and response.
The industry was told that if we developed and implemented a robust systematic approach then this would be taken into consideration along with other factors when deciding whether to issue a Notice of Suspension (NOS) or Notice of Intended Enforcement (NOIE) action. Experience tells me that this has not been the case. The over enforcement and inconsistency of enforcement of humane handling and slaughter regulations over the last few years has been an ongoing issue for processors. This issue will be at the forefront of AAMP’s efforts in Washington in 2017 once the dust settles on the transition of a new administration. The enforcement of humane handling has been all over the spectrum, and not just between districts, but also within districts. It appears that there are different sets of rules depending on where you are in the country. One district may receive an NOIE and under the same set of circumstances may receive a Notice of Suspension in another district.
If having a robust humane handling program is recommended and not a requirement, and there does not appear to be any difference in the level of enforcement between those who have and those who don’t, why would you open yourself up to the increased scrutiny of this notice? Here is what will be required of you if you choose to have a robust plan. When the establishment management wants to implement an animal-handling program it believes to be a robust systematic approach, it is to request an FSIS review. Once an establishment has a program in place, the associated plan, corrective actions and records produced will be subject to monthly verification reviews by PHVs. DVMSs are to evaluate establishments’ robust systematic approach plans during their Humane Handling Verification visits, which are performed every 12-18 months.
AAMP and its members are fully supportive of humane handling and slaughter regulations. We support having a robust plan in place to make sure we are paying attention to the details and handling animals in our facilities correctly. My opposition to it is that FSIS should get their own house in order and have a clear set of rules and a decision tree in place so that inspectors and DVM’s are responding to incidents in the same way. If a plant has a plan in place and there is a mis-stun and they follow their plan with a follow up stun, then there should be no action taken by FSIS. FSIS cannot continue to enforce from a zero tolerance point of view; that is not reality and they know that, which is why they are requiring a robust plan.
I trust all of our members will continue to do the right thing and handle the animals in their facilities to the best of their ability to ensure a safe, humane kill. A formal response will be sent to Washington explaining AAMP’s position on this and it will be followed by a visit.