Our Pork Supply
We rely on more than 2,000 independent farmers to sell us healthy, high quality pigs to supply our pork processing operations. Since Tyson Foods’ Core Values call on us to “serve as stewards of the land and animals that we depend on,” we work collaboratively with farmers to provide proper treatment to the animals on the farms and in our plants.
At Tyson Foods, we take animal well-being very seriously. We know our customers and consumers want to know the food they buy has been produced responsibly. That’s why in 2012, we introduced the Tyson Foods FarmCheck® program, which involves third-party, animal well-being audits of the farms that supply us.
FarmCheck® Program 2015 Farm Audit Outcomes
Check out the results from last year’s FarmCheck® audits in our Sustainability Report.
So how does the FarmCheck® program work?
- Third party auditors visit farms that supply us with pigs, and make sure the animals have access to food and water, and employees are using best practices for animal handling. External site assessments are done according to the guidelines of the National Pork Board’s Pork Quality Assurance program, utilizing the Common Swine Industry Audit platform.
- An external Animal Well-Being Advisory Panel reviews the audit program and recommends any needed improvements.
- With guidance from the panel, Tyson Foods supports additional farm animal well-being research.
- We’re giving animal well-being our fullest attention. We have a dedicated team within our company to oversee all of our efforts around animal well-being and animal welfare.
Real pig farmers
|Videos courtesy of the National Pork Board.
You may have some questions about our pork supply, and we want to answer them. Below are some topics that have been in the news.
Unlike some of our competitors, we rely almost entirely on independent farmers to sell us the pigs we need for our pork plants. We support continuous improvement in the way farmers manage their pigs, including the type of housing they use for pregnant mother pigs, known as sows. We have encouraged them to focus on the quality and quantity of the space for pregnant sows when they remodel or build new barns.
Blunt Force Euthanasia
While blunt force is approved by the American Association of Swine Veterinarians, as a way to euthanize sick or dying piglets, it’s very difficult to watch. We have encouraged independent farmers who sell hogs to us to discontinue this practice and use other veterinary-approved methods.