New Delhi [India] August 20(ANI/NewsVoir): Ananda, a leading dairy products manufacturing company has committed to responsible sourcing and providing a better life for approximately 400,000 dairy animals in their supply chain.
Ananda follows in the footsteps of Arvind Dairy and Happy Milk, who made the commitment earlier this year. Some smaller scale farms have also publicly committed to taking a step towards better welfare for animals. These farms include dairy operations such as Vrindavan Milk, the Way We Were and Mukhi Dairy.
These six companies will now follow the following commitments, providing better welfare for up to 5,26,000 animals.
The companies have committed to:
* Not sourcing from urban and peri-urban dairies by 2020
* Implementing the minimum dairy welfare requirements by 2025
* Providing information in their Annual Reports and charting their annual progress in implementing these commitments.
The importance of animal welfare across supply chains is also evident internationally as seen in the global Business Benchmark for Animal Welfare (BBFAW), which covers more than 100 of the largest food companies, including Fonterra, Nestle and Groupe Danone.
More locally, recent visits to Indian rural farms implementing the minimum dairy welfare requirements have realized a range of important benefits. Not only are their cows in good condition, loose housed, with continual access to water, comfortable bedding and shade but they are also producing more milk and are in better health. These provisions are associated with a decrease in cost and labour needs. Farmers report these changes also translate to a lower need for treatments, antibiotics and so can lead to better quality milk. Better welfare in exchange for better milk, livelihoods and returns.
World Animal Protection has created a public movement towards better welfare for over 299 million cattle in India. These latest commitments from different companies reflect the public sentiment and conveys to consumers they will not source from peri-urban and urban dairies.
"This latest commitment shows that a large dairy manufacturer can commit to responsible sourcing and better dairy welfare. It shows they will work towards assuring that the worst cruelty of urban and peri-urban dairies is not in their supply chain and that they work towards assuring their customers that their milk is produced to the minimum welfare requirements", said Gajender K Sharma, India Country Director at World Animal Protection.
"Being a part of the dairy industry, we understand the importance of animal welfare as it is these animals only who are giving us business, so it is our ethical responsibility to make sure they are also living a healthy life. I personally try my best to support issues like animal welfare and we provide regular training to all the farmers on the same. I can proudly say that Ananda has come on board with World Animal Protection to support this cause and will try its best to work for the welfare of dairy animals through our farmers", said Radhey Shyam Dixit, Founder and Chairman, Ananda Group.
World Animal Protection welcomes this commitment by Ananda and urges dairy companies like Amul, Mother Dairy, Paras and other Cooperatives to meet us and join the movement.
World Animal Protection's digital campaign 'Where does your milk come from?' aims to create greater awareness about dairy welfare and the worst cruelty in urban and peri-urban dairies. Over 75,000 consumers have signed up which helps to show the companies that consumers care about dairy welfare. More can be done, consumers can be a part of this change by asking their dairy supplier directly to commit to not sourcing from urban and peri-urban dairies. If you are new to the campaign, add your name to the petition here: Sign the petition.
The 5 minimum dairy welfare requirements are:
* 24 hour access to clean water and good quality feed.
* Access to suitable shade shelter and comfortable resting.
* Access to preventative healthcare for all animals and all calves receive adequate colostrum and care.
* No permanent tethering or caging, suitable outdoor access.
* Good animal handling and a humane plan to manage unwanted animals.
In 2016, a survey was commissioned by World Animal Protection across six cities in India namely New Delhi, Mumbai, Bengaluru, Hyderabad, Chennai and Kolkata with over 3000 participants. As per the survey, the cruel treatment of animals in local dairies in India is unacceptable to almost 90 per cent of people who responded; highlighting strong support for better protection of dairy animals across the country.
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