ANIMAL WELFARE IN THE DAIRY INDUSTRY: AN AUTHORITATIVE STANDARD DEVELOPED AND AVAILABLE FROM THE SABS.
The South African Bureau of Standards (SABS) recently published the South African National Standard – SANS 1694:2018 relating to the welfare of dairy cattle, which forms part of similar initiatives for other livestock species and production systems of the ‘National Committee SABS/TC1094 Livestock Welfare’. The Standard was prepared by the dairy industry and other knowledgeable representatives in conjunction with SABS officials. It is in compliance with the agreement of the World Trade Organization (WTO) on Technical Barriers to Trade (TBT) and was compiled taking into consideration documents such as:
– The IDF Guide to Good Animal Welfare in Dairy Production – 2008
– Animal Welfare and dairy cattle production systems of the OIE – Terrestrial Animal Health Code – 25/7/2017
– Excerpts from the Dairy Development Initiative – Code for the Primary Industry
The importance of animal welfare is well recognized by dairy producers and they have come to realize that it as an essential and traceable part of the value chain for the quality of their products to the consumer.
At the national level, concerted efforts are made by the organised dairy industry (Milk SA, MPO and SAMPRO) to raise awareness on animal welfare standards. The Standard by the SABS [SANS 1694:2018 (The welfare of dairy cattle)] is an important step in assisting procedures to adhere to minimum criteria of animal welfare and encouraging producers to incorporate relevant requirements within their overall responsibility towards the health of the dairy herd.
It is advisable that every dairy producer purchase a copy of the Standard: SANS 1694:2018 (The welfare of dairy cattle). It is available from the SA Bureau of Standards (SABS) in Pretoria.