A world-class animal care program makes Maple Leaf a leader in the production of gestation box-free pigs in North America
Mississauga, Ontario, November 17, 2021/CNW/-Maple Leaf Foods Inc. (TSX: MFI), a leading producer of high-quality sustainable protein in North America, announced today that it will be completed by the end of 2021 All breeding sows in the pig houses owned by the transformation company use its unique, industry-leading advanced open sow house system. This world-class system provides an optimized open house during pregnancy, allowing sows to roam, rest, eat and socialize freely.
This transformation of the sow barn makes Maple Leaf Foods a leader in the production of box-free pigs in North America and is another important milestone in the company's commitment to providing better care through advanced animal welfare.
Stop using the pregnancy box
In 2014, the Canadian pork industry pledged to stop using pregnancy boxes by 2024. As one of the leading protein producers in North America, Maple Leaf Foods signed the agreement, but set a more ambitious timetable to change the sow houses of all Maple Leaf agricultural farms it owns to the end of 2021. Advanced open sow house system. The pig barn owned by Maple Leaf Foods produces approximately 40% of the pigs that the company uses to produce its branded pork products each year.
The gestation pen is a separate pen where pregnant pigs are kept during the 78-day gestation period to ensure their safety, but there are concerns about their impact on welfare and natural behavior. According to a 2013 survey conducted by the Canadian Humane Society International, 84% of Canadians support the elimination of pregnancy boxes. (1)
As part of the company’s commitment to world-class animal care, the animal care team at Maple Leaf Foods has studied pig houses and feeding systems around the world and combined its observed best practices into the company’s unique advanced open sow housing middle. The difference between Maple Leaf Foods’ system and other open sow housing systems is not only to open or remove pregnancy boxes, but to create housing areas with various spaces to support sows to choose when to play, socialize, and Desire to eat and rest. The unique open system also helps Maple Leaf Foods team members to more easily observe sows as they move, monitor their health more accurately and provide the best care.
Maple Leaf Foods' advanced open sow house system provides additional comfort, including:
Use cool water mist in the hot summer
Provide night lights for sows who choose to eat at night.
“Ensuring that the animals we care for experience the best environment at Maple Leaf Foods is the right approach and an important part of our sustainability commitment,” said President and CEO Michael McCain. "Our progress in eliminating gestation boxes in sow houses across Canada is an important milestone because we are proud to lead the industry in adopting a more compassionate approach to animal welfare."
Maple Leaf Foods has developed a strong and mature sustainable development plan that focuses on providing better food, better care, better communities and a better planet. Better care includes the treatment of animals according to the five freedoms and five areas, which are widely accepted principles to ensure optimal physical and mental well-being. The company's advanced open sow house model is one of the most innovative in the world and has been praised by leading experts in the field of swine welfare. Due to the housing transition, by the end of 2021, 96% of Greenfield Natural Meat Co.® pork products will come from open sows, and with the supply of open sows, this number is expected to increase in 2022. Greenfield Natural Meat Co.® products have a label to confirm that the pork is from a pig without a gestation box.
To learn more about Maple Leaf Foods’ commitment to animal care, please visit: https://www.mapleleaffoods.com/sustainability/better-care/commitment-to-animal-care/
To learn more about the sustainability of Maple Leaf Foods, please visit: mapleleaffoods.com/sustainability
To learn more about the Maple Leaf Foods brand, please visit: mapleleaffoods.com/our-brands
Maple Leaf Foods Inc. ("Maple Leaf Foods") is a carbon neutral company whose vision is to be the most sustainable protein company on the planet, responsible for the production of leading brands of food, including Maple Leaf®, Maple Leaf Prime® , Maple Leaf Natural Selections®, Schneiders®, Schneiders® Country Naturals®, Mina®, Greenfield Natural Meat Co.®, Lightlife® and Field Roast™. Maple Leaf Foods has approximately 13,500 employees and has operations in Canada, the United States and Asia. The company is headquartered in Mississauga, Ontario, and its shares are traded on the Toronto Stock Exchange (MFI).
(1) Source: International Humane Society 2013, May 9-12 and 14-18, OMINBUS N=2,022
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SOURCE Maple Leaf Foods Inc.
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