US - The National Pork Board reports it's beginning to get a sense of the level of acceptance among producers, packers and auditors of the Common US Swine Industry Audit.
In response to the implementation of on farm audit programs by US packers for their suppliers, the National Pork Board facilitated the creation of an industry task force to develop a "Common US Swine Industry Audit."
Sherrie Webb, the director of animal welfare with the National Pork Board, says we're seeing the audit, which was released for general use last October, being implemented this year and we're starting to get a sense of how it's working.
Sherrie Webb-National Pork Board:
We've always sort of operated on the tenet that what ever we create has to be workable, affordable and credible for all segments of the chain and so, as we were working to develop the audit we really wanted to focus on how to make it outcome based so that, regardless of the type of farm, size, location of the farm, that the audit could be applicable to them.
That really served as a basis for it.
The outcome of the audit is that it focuses on animal well being as well as food safety, from birth of the pig to transport from the farm, and really focuses on 4 key aspects, looking at the animals themselves, the facilities in which they are raised, evaluating caretakers and caretaker training, and finally record keeping.
We want to make sure that, as an industry, we're addressing concerns and providing verification of what we are doing as producers.
This being the first year that it's been implemented across the industry we're getting feedback from producers, packers and auditors that are using it.
The industry audit task force will meet to consider all of that input and learn how to make the audit better, how to make it stronger and make sure that we're still on point for our objectives.
Webb notes information regarding the Common US Swine Industry Audit can be accessed at pork.org.
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