One Health CertifiedTM, a comprehensive animal care programme, establishes verified animal production practices in five core areas: disease prevention, veterinary care, responsible antibiotic use, animal welfare, and environmental impacts.
Companies that align their procedures to meet the programme standards, and pass an audit administered by the US Department of Agriculture, qualify for certification and the right to label their retail and wholesale products with a logo that conveys responsible animal care practices have been followed and verified.
Participating in this USDA Process Verified Program provides an objective, third-party verification that producers fully comply with the guidelines of the programme. Through this process, participating companies will demonstrate their management commitment, transparency, and accountability to follow the responsible animal care practices outlined in the One Health CertifiedTM programme standards.
Mountaire Farms, the nation’s sixth largest chicken producer, is the first company to adopt the standards for chicken. The company successfully completed audits in all of its production complexes in November of 2019, when the USDA verified that their practices met the One Health CertifiedTM standards.
“It was important to us that we participate in a holistic and ethical programme that strives for optimal health outcomes for animals, consumers, and the planet,” said Dr Don Ritter, director of technical marketing at Mountaire Farms. “One Health CertifiedTMsuccessfully avoids the trade-offs and unintended consequences of more narrowly focused programmes, which may at times put animal health and welfare at unnecessary risk.”
One Health CertifiedTM defines species-specific requirements for each animal protein under one universal programme. Chicken and turkey are the first species for which audit standards have been established. Additional animal protein standards are in progress and will become available for certification in the near future.
“As an organisation, NIAMRRE is delighted to support the One Health CertifiedTM programme,” said Dr Paul Plummer, NIAMRRE executive director. “The programme is true to the One Health principles of multiple organisations and disciplines working together to improve human health, veterinary health, agriculture and the environment.”