Emerald Springs Farm awarded top animal welfare certification

Published 11:30 pm Monday, February 10, 2014

The herd of goats and flock of laying hens at Emerald Springs Farm now are certified as Animal Welfare Approved.

This certification and food label lets consumers know that these animals were raised in accordance with the highest animal welfare standards in the U.S., using sustainable agriculture methods on an independent family farm.

Bill and Lee Barker moved to Polk County in 2007 to establish and develop their nine-acre family farm.

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They raise AWA-certified dairy goats and laying hens, and grow a range of vegetables, herbs and flowers for sale to the local community.

Scientific research shows that pasture-raised eggs contain three times as much vitamin E, seven times more beta-carotene, and twice the amount of Omega 3 fatty acids as industrial eggs.

AWA Program Director Andrew Gunther said, “The accountability and integrity offered by Animal Welfare Approved farmers like Bill and Lee are unmatched in food production. We’re glad to have Emerald Springs Farm in the AWA family.”

Animal Welfare Approved audits, certifies and supports farmers raising their animals according to the highest welfare standards, outdoors on pasture or range. Called a “badge of honor for farmers” and the “gold standard,” AWA is the most highly regarded food label in North America when it comes to animal welfare, pasture-based farming, and sustainability.

All AWA standards, policies and procedures are available on the AWA website, making it the most transparent certification available.

Animal Welfare Approved’s online directory of AWA farms, restaurants and products enables the public to search for AWA farms, restaurants and products by zip code, keywords, products and type of establishment.

In addition, AWA has published “Food Labeling for Dummies,” a regularly updated guide to commonly used food claims and terms, available free for download at www.AnimalWelfareApproved.org.


– article submitted
by Katie Baumer