We have a long-standing commitment to the well-being and proper handling of the chickens, cattle, hogs, and turkeys we process for our food products. That commitment extends to handling the animals during loading, transport, and unloading.
Providing a safe journey for the animals

In addition to numerous well-being benefits, careful and quiet animal handling during loading, transport, and unloading can produce meat quality benefits as well. For these reasons, we’ve implemented the following guidelines to ensure safe and responsible transportation of the chicken, cattle, hogs, and turkeys we process for our food products.

Average Transport Times

Approximately 97% of cattle, 99% of hogs, 100% of turkeys and 100% of chickens we harvest in the United States of America, India, and China are in transport to a processing facility less than eight-hours. Additionally, in fiscal 2018, we surveyed a group of our suppliers that make up more than 80-percent of the money we spent with third parties on to purchase chicken, beef, pork and dairy. Based on a 72-percent response rate, we learned the chicken meat we buy is from birds that are transported in 8 hours or less.

Driver Certification

All drivers who haul hogs, and managers of these drivers, are required to be certified in the Transport Quality Assurance Program, developed by the National Pork Board.

Communicating Expectations

We communicate our expectations throughout our workforce and supply chain on important issues such as animal welfare.

Explore Further

Responsible transportation

  • We seek to minimize stocking densities, travel times, ensure proper ventilation, and protect the animals from harsh weather conditions.
  • We strive to avoid the transport of live animals for more than 8 hours to harvest. The vast majority of the chickens, cattle, hogs, and turkeys we harvest are in transport less than four hours. Due to the geographic profile of independent supply chain, along with the need to operate our processing plants in an efficient manner, we could encounter longer transport times. If transportation of the animals exceeds 24 consecutive hours they are unloaded and provided feed, water, and rest.
  • We maintain emergency management plans for motor-vehicle accidents involving animals in transport.
  • Our processing plants maintain standard procedures for receiving live animals that require unloading animals as soon as possible, providing water at all times, and feeding the animals if they are kept for longer than 24 hours.
  • We use the North American Meat Institute Transportation Audit Guidelines for Cattle and Hogs at all our beef and pork processing plants.
  • In addition to our support of the National Pork Board’s We Care℠ Initiative, we require all transporters delivering hogs to pork harvest facilities to be Transport Quality Assurance© certified. Additionally, all transporters delivering cattle to our beef harvest facilities are trained through the Master Cattle Transporter Guide or the Beef Quality Assurance Transportation (BQAT) program. Effective January 1, 2020, all transporters delivering to our beef harvest facilities will be required to have current certification under the BQAT program.