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Basket swaps that make a difference

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  • RSPCA Australia
  • Tuesday, 24 January 2023

A new year is here, and for many Australians, the promise of a fresh start brings the motivation to make new year’s resolutions. If this new year has inspired you to make a difference for animals but you’re not sure where to start, incorporating more higher-welfare products into your shopping list is a fantastic way to make your choices count for farm animals.

And it’s easier than you think! Making a positive impact for farm animals doesn’t have to mean overhauling your entire grocery list or frequenting boutique stores for expensive ingredients. Read on for some helpful tips and easy basket swap ideas to guide you on your way to being a conscious consumer this new year. 

Positive swaps for pork and poultry

Pork and poultry products are staples of many Aussie households, especially around the summer BBQ season. If you’re planning on buying that classic hot roast chicken or fresh pork, make sure to look for the RSPCA Approved logo. Producers with RSPCA Approved certification rear their animals to the RSPCA’s detailed animal welfare standards, ensuring they are provided a higher-welfare environment with all the creature comforts necessary for a good life. Producers must adhere to hundreds of animal-specific requirements to maintain RSPCA Approved certification, so when you choose RSPCA Approved, you’re making a choice that not only benefits farm animals, but also supports Australian farmers prioritising animal welfare.

So where can you spot the logo? All Coles and Woolworths own brand fresh chicken has RSPCA Approved certification, in addition to only using RSPCA Approved chicken for their frozen and convenience products as well. All Coles free-range pork is also RSPCA Approved. And the choices don’t stop there – there are currently over 1000 products with the RSPCA Approved certification that are available in major retailers nationally. Head over to our dedicated brand page to find your new favourites. 

Go Cage Free

Excitingly, the recent review of the Poultry Standards and Guidelines was finalised late last year with a proposed phase out date for cage eggs of 2036. But why wait to phase cage eggs out of your grocery list? If you haven’t already, swap cage eggs for barn laid or free range – this is a way to make a really tangible change and help the millions of layer hens who are still suffering in barren battery cages.  

Layer hens confined to battery cages suffer cramped, barren conditions unable to spread their wings or move freely, causing a range of health and wellbeing issues including brittle leg bones and footpad problems. The use of battery cages is one of the worst animal welfare issues in Australia today. By lessening the demand for cage eggs, you’re telling the egg industry that you don’t support battery cages and want better welfare conditions for layer hens.  

Cage-free eggs are readily available in retailers across Australia, and if you’re unsure about the many labels adorning egg cartons these days, our labelling blog can be a handy guide. 

Higher welfare salmon swaps

With more Australian’s choosing salmon as a healthy option in the warmer weather, fish welfare and how to buy responsibly is increasingly top of mind. If shopping for salmon you may see many labels – wild caught, responsibly sourced, Alaskan, etc – but there’s currently only one certification that focuses solely on fish welfare and that’s RSPCA Approved.  

RSPCA Approved higher-welfare standards for Atlantic salmon focus on good farming practices, fish handling, husbandry, and management. With over 500 welfare requirements, you can have confidence that salmon from producers with the RSPCA Approved certification are well cared for during life and also experience a humane death when the time comes.  Huon, Pialligo Smokehouse, and Woolworths each have their own select range of salmon that has RSPCA Approved certification so finding higher-welfare salmon is easier than ever before. 

Your choices matter

Here at the RSPCA, we often say one of the best ways individuals who choose to consume animal-based products can make an impact for farm animal welfare is to opt for those that have been farmed in higher-welfare conditions. With so many labels and choices available it can be difficult to know what kind of farming system we are really buying into. We hope this blog is a useful guide to help you on your way to incorporating welfare-friendly choices into your grocery list. Happy new year from the team at RSPCA Approved. 

Interested in reading more?

How to choose higher welfare, no matter your budget | Latest News | RSPCA Approved

Farming to the RSPCA's standards | Latest News | RSPCA Approved


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