ANIMAL WELFARE GUIDELINES
For many years, Barilla has been committed to ensuring that all suppliers of raw materials of animal origin not only comply with their legal obligations, but also meet the highest standards and criteria of animal welfare.
To support this commitment, the Group has worked alongside the organization Compassion in World Farming (CIWF), to draw up the Barilla Guidelines on Animal Welfare.
Barilla sets rigorous criteria for the purchase of eggs, meat and fish, and added chicken to this list in 2017.
The Group's guidelines acknowledge the vital importance of respecting the physical and mental wellbeing of animals, as well as their freedom to express species-specific behaviors. The Group therefore promotes respect for the Five Animal Freedoms:
- Freedom from hunger and thirst;
- Freedom to have an appropriate physical environment;
- Freedom from pain, injury and disease;
- Freedom to express normal species-specific behavior;
- Freedom from fear and distress.
The guidelines also lay down specific standards that livestock farmers involved in Barilla supply chains are obliged to meet. In particular:
- All animals reared in the supply chains must have appropriate access to feed and water, thus fulfilling their needs and reducing aggression.
- Stocking density must be such as to ensure the comfort and welfare of the animals, and allow the expression of species-specific behaviors.
- Routine mutilation must be avoided, unless strictly necessary to safeguard the welfare of animals.
- Animals must be transported in such a way as to minimize potential causes of stress and the duration of transit. Journeys of over 8 hours must be avoided at all times.
- Animals must always be stunned before slaughter.
- Antibiotics must always be used responsibly, by reducing their use where possible, and avoiding preventive use.
- The use of growth hormones is not permitted.
- Genetic engineering and the cloning of farm animals and/or their progeny is not permitted.
- Selective breeding should be promoted on the basis of factors that enhance welfare and not merely to increase productivity.
Compliance with these standards, which is periodically checked by means of specific audits, forms an integral part of the contracts entered into with suppliers of eggs and meat. Should a supplier fail to meet these standards, Barilla draws up a realignment plan in relation to the severity of the case.
In order to train people in animal welfare, furthermore, Barilla has provided an internal training course, run by Compassion in World Farming (CIWF) for all employees involved in managing the supply chain, especially in Global Vendor Assurance and the Global Purchasing Unit.
Barilla believes that keeping hens in confined spaces is detrimental to their welfare, and has therefore decided to phase out the practice from its supply chain, and switch to the exclusive use of eggs laid by cage-free hens by 2020.
All eggs used in "Le Emiliane" and "La Collezione" pasta and in Mulino Bianco and Pavesi bakery products have come from cage-free hens since 2012. Since the beginning of 2017, all eggs used in Harrys brand products have come from cage-free hens.
In 2014, Barilla launched a major project with its suppliers of meat for the production of sauces and filled pasta, aimed at formulating new guidelines on animal welfare that cover all supplies of pork and beef. These guidelines comply with all the above-mentioned practices.
Suppliers signed the joint document in 2015 and the respective practices are already in the implementation phase. In 2018, moreover, Barilla will plan the final phase of implementation of all the practices for both supply chains.
The guidelines currently cover 100% of supplies of pork and beef for sauces and filled pasta produced in Italy (80% of the total quantity of meat used by Barilla).
Working in partnership with its suppliers of chicken, Barilla will apply the standards classified as "best" in Compassion in World Farming's animal welfare matrix, at global level by 2024.
Regional commitment in the U.S.A.
In the United States, the Group will work in partnership with its suppliers of chicken to apply the following guidelines by 2024:
- Transition to the breeds approved by the worldwide organization RSPCA or by the Global Animal Partnership (GAP) on the basis of measurable improvements to welfare.
- Reduction of stocking density to a maximum of 1.2 kg/m2, and prohibition of the use of cages.
- Rearing in enhanced environments that meet the new GAP standards, including bedding and the management of light.
- Elimination of pre-stunning handling, and introduction of irreversible stunning systems.
Total weight of strategic raw materials locally purchased, by country of operation
The global Business Benchmark on Farm Animal Welfare (BBFAW) presented its sixth report in London in February 2018. The number of companies analyzed rose from 99 in 2016 to 110 in 2017, in 18 different countries. BBFAW has examined the public communications of leading worldwide food companies and assessed how they manage and communicate their farm animal welfare policies and practices.
Barilla has consolidated its leadership on the Italian stage and stands out for its detailed, transparent communication on animal welfare, which not only sets out multiple tangible goals, but also reports the progress made, year by year, towards achieving them.
Supply chain for products of animal origin
Barilla uses eggs for its bakery and fresh pasta products. In 2012, the Group embarked on the process of converting its supply chain, by phasing out its purchasing of eggs from cage-reared hens in favor eggs from cage-free hens. As a result of this commitment, all eggs purchased in France and Italy come from cage-free hens. Barilla has made significant progress in Brazil and Russia, where the adoption of new types of sustainable farming will reach completion in 2019.
Barilla also conducts periodic on-site audits of its egg suppliers, to ensure that they are fully applying sustainable farming practices in line with the Group's animal welfare policy.
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FROM CAGE-FREE HENS
In Brazil, Barilla has started the process of converting its supply chain to the sourcing of eggs laid by cage-free hens, and has started a preliminary analysis of its supply chain in Russia. In both countries, the Group expects to complete the process by 2019.
In the United States, Barilla has launched a project for the reformulation of products containing eggs, which will bring about a phased reduction in the use of this ingredient. The remaining volumes will be sourced entirely from cage-free poultry farms over the course of 2019.
Lastly, Barilla conducts periodic audits on all the cage-free poultry farms it uses, to ensure that they are properly aligned with alternative rearing systems. To date, these audits have been carried out on European suppliers, as these are the only ones that have completed the process of conversion to cage-free rearing. In non-European countries, the Group uses suppliers who adhere to nationally recognized farm audit schemes. Where no national schemes exist, an Animal Welfare Officer is appointed to conduct audits of a sample of farmers, to ensure that their practices are in line with a recognized guarantee scheme.
Pork and beef
Pork and beef are core ingredients of Barilla's ready ragout sauce and filled pasta products in Italy. In line with its animal welfare policy, the Group sources its meat from producers who uphold the five freedoms of animal welfare.
Over the year, Barilla completed an analysis of its meat supply chain with a view to identifying possible areas for improvement, in line with the parameters included in the Business Benchmark on Farm Animal Welfare (BBFAW). The analysis revealed improvements in alignment with BBFAW requirements, and where standards diverged, Barilla undertook to draw up an improvement plan in 2018, to be implemented in conjunction with farmers over the next few years.
With regard to the sourcing of pork, the Group embarked on a joint process, involving Compassion in World Farming and Barilla's Italian suppliers, aimed at eliminating the practice of docking the tails of pigs along the supply chain. This process is designed improve animal welfare, raise awareness of the issue among farmers, and promote the development of alternative farming practices that reduce the incidence of cannibalism and aggression among animals.
After an initial phase of monitoring and improvement of environmental standards on all pig farms, Barilla involved farmers in specific training sessions on best practices in long-tailed pig farming.
In parallel, between late 2016 and early 2017, the Group carried out tests and assessments on the best materials for enhancing the farm environment, with a view to meeting the behavioral needs of animals to best effect, and prevent cases of aggression. Over the next few years, Barilla will actively cooperate with its suppliers to implement these livestock farming standards across its entire supply chain by 2019.
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THE BUSINESS BENCHMARK ON FARMED ANIMAL WELFARE
During 2017, Barilla conducted a survey, involving Italian meat suppliers, aimed at checking their alignment with the parameters set down in the Business Benchmark on Farmed Animal Welfare (BBFAW). The analysis yielded the following results:
- Gestation crates for sows are used for the first 4 weeks of gestation, after which all animals are transferred to collective pens for the remaining period.
- 50% of the animals bred are not subject to tail docking.
- All pigs are transported from the farm to the slaughter houses in less than 8 hours, including loading and unloading from vehicles.
- All pork used in Barilla products comes from animals that are effectively stunned before slaughter.
- All beef cattle are transported from the farm to the abattoir in less than 8 hours, including loading and unloading from vehicles.
- All beef used in Barilla products comes from animals that are effectively stunned before slaughter.
The results of the analysis carried out will also be verified, over the course of 2018, with the aid of an independent third-party body, and an improvement plan for 2020 will be drawn up.