Steps taken throughout the beef, poultry and pork production chains reinforce the
Company’s commitment to becoming an industry benchmark
Sao Paulo, July 17, 2018 – JBS plans to take the lead on best animal welfare practices and be recognized as a global benchmark in this area. Based on this platform, JBS has been developing a wide range of initiativs throughout the production chain and, in the past two years, has invested R$ 45 million in team, producer and partner training, equipment purchases, facility improvements, fleet renewal and other activities.
JBS’s commitment encompasses its beef, poultry and pork operations and focuses on guaranteeing the five fundamental animal freedoms: They are: freedom from hunger, thirst and malnutrition; freedom from discomfort; freedom from pain, injury or disease; freedom to express their natural behavior; and freedom from fear or stress. These efforts are starting to bear fruit. In the most recent edition of The Business Benchmark on Farm Animal Welfare (BBFAW), the Company’s ranking improved from level 3 to 2, scoring 25% higher compared with the previous edition of the study.
Last year alone, JBS trained around 15 thousand employees and farmers in Brazil as part of its effort to implement best practices across the production chain. JBS employs specialist, multidisciplinary teams for each type of protein who are responsible for implementing and monitoring animal welfare activities. All operations employ a check-list to assess indicators based on current legislation, customer requirements and domestic and international certifications. This routine includes: developing structured action plans to address any issues that arise, transport density and appropriate unloading conditions, waiting environments and conditions, stunning efficiency, fasting times and other factors.
JBS is the only company in the country that uses cameras to monitor animal welfare at all cattle units. This means the company is able to monitor the entire process from unloading to slaughter and ensure staff adopt best practices during animal handling.
In line with its commitments in the area, at the beginning of 2018 JBS launched the Supply Chain Seal, which certifies compliance with international standards and requirements of common interest, including adoption of best animal welfare practices for all customers and markets JBS serves. Seal audits are carried out by the Brazilian Certification Service (SBC).
Last year, the company renewed its cattle transportation fleet to include items that improve animal welfare, such as a hydraulic loading and unloading lift, which eliminates the need to use ramps. The company is currently operating 100 new trucks capable of carrying 54 cattle each and, by the end of 2018, the fleet will have around 200 vehicles. All JBS and third-party drivers also receive animal welfare training and certification and they are also required to sign up to our animal welfare policy.
The company also partners with some of the biggest names in the area, such as researcher Temple Grandin, who is coming to Brazil in July for a further round of training for staff who deal directly with cattle. JBS’s Brazil plants were built to comply with Temple’s principles. The company also supports animal welfare projects being led by the Paulista State University (Unesp) and the University of London.
In August 2017, JBS committed to only purchasing commercial eggs used as ingredients in its products from poultry farms where chickens are bred without cages. By 2020, JBS products made in Brazil will no longer use eggs produced by caged birds, underlining the extent to which JBS believes it is important to implement animal welfare practices throughout its production processes in order to support business sustainability.
To increase the effectiveness of its periodic internal audits, the company has also revised its Corporate Technical Standards and the internal audit check-lists. In parallel, internal audit scores have been included on the Quality Management Dashboard, which means the company can better monitor and manage practical animal welfare outcomes and take more effective steps to resolve issues through adoption of action plans.
In the pork chain, Seara has committed to transitioning from a production system that uses individual to collective gestation crates by 2025, whereas the market expects to conclude this process by 2026. 45% of crates have been converted to date. To achieve this target on time, the company is helping its integrated suppliers to adopt the new standard to ensure its entire production chain migrates to the new system.
Additionally, animal welfare teams have received training from the World Animal Protection NGO, the Brazilian Pig Breeders’ Association (ABCS) and the Santa Catarina Pig Breeders’ Association (ACCS). In 2017, the audit scores were also included on the Quality Management Dashboard to increase the visibility of unit results in terms of animal welfare practices.
JBS is one of the world’s leading food industry companies with approximately 230 thousand employees in over 20 countries. The Company owns a portfolio of brands that are acknowledged for their excellence and innovation, including Friboi, Moy Park, Pilgrim’s Pride, Primo, Seara, Swift, Gold’n Plump and others, serving over 350,000 customers of more than 150 nationalities worldwide. The company’s focus on innovation also reflects its management approach to related businesses in areas such as leather, biodiesel, collagen, personal hygiene and cleaning products, natural wrappings, solid waste management solutions, metal packaging and transportation. JBS has adopted best sustainability practices throughout its value chain and constantly monitors its suppliers using satellite imagery, georeferenced maps of supplier farms and monitors official data from government agencies; the company also focuses on the highest possible food safety and quality standards. The success of JBS’s operations is closely tied to our Animal welfare practices, which are rigorously applied and have received an increasing share of investments to further improve the Company’s efforts in this area, in line with best practices.
Corporate Communications Department
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