Five food organizations nominated for animal rights group's annual liar award
Five brands or organizations were nominated as Wakker Dier's liar of the year, the animal welfare group reported on Wednesday. The nominees include the Keurslager brand, the "stress-free" veal from Meatlovers, a dairy quality label from PlanetProof, the "pure" baby food line from Olvarit, and an advertising campaign from the chicken sector which claimed "optimal welfare" in factory farms, Wakker Dier said.
With this annual campaign, the organization aims to draw attention to deceptive advertising and false claims about animal welfare. The selection has proven to be effective, according to the organization, as nominees each year often announce that they will improve their products. "With this campaign, we are keeping companies on their toes and that is sorely needed," said Kenny Oostrik of Wakker Dier.
The term "Keurslager" is meant to remind someone of quality products approved under a certification mark with animal welfare taken into consideration. "Unjustly. The butcher's association does not set any animal welfare requirements at all. Such an 'approved' butcher can therefore choose what he puts in his display case. Factory farm chicken, for example: Animal suffering which the supermarkets already rejected."
The fact that Meatlovers claims that its calves live in animal-friendly stables and lead a "stress-free" life is an all-out lie, said Wakker Dier. "The calves live in closed stables, on slats, in their own feces. Little space, no grass and a lot of stress."
The requirements for the "strict" PlanetProof dairy label are far and few between, the animal rights group said. "The premature mortality among calves, for example, may be as high as one in five animals. That is not a strict requirement, that is higher than the national average."
It also said that Olvarit's baby food contains factory farm turkey, while the company says on its website that it is committed to "offering animals a safe and healthy environment". Furthermore, according to Wakker Dier, the chicken sector speaks in a campaign of "optimal welfare" of Dutch chickens, when much of the poultry in the country is reared on factory farms.
People can vote for the year's biggest liar starting on Wednesday. The winner will be announced on 22 September.