Whole30 Approved® Animal Welfare Policy

(Oct. 1, 2019)
Whole30 Approved® Animal Welfare Policy

The treatment of farm animals is important to Whole30 and is an essential part of the movement to improve our food system. To ensure good animal welfare practices are operational on farms and in supply chains, we have partnered with the ASPCA® Farm Animal Welfare Department to outline minimum standards that must be met for all animal protein-containing products under a Whole30 Approved® license agreement.

There are two options by which to demonstrate that animal welfare is operational in your supply chain by 2021.

Option 1: Whole30 Approved products with animals in their supply chain abide by the minimal standards below, and demonstrate compliance to these standards via third party auditing by January 31, 2021.

  • No abusive handling or neglect
  • No confinement in cages (poultry), crates (pigs), individual hutches or continuous tethering/tie stalls (cattle)
  • Continuous pasture access or daily outdoor access
  • Protection from inclement weather and predators
  • Comfortable resting area for all animals
  • Natural weaning or two-stage weaning (cattle)
  • No feedlots (cattle)
  • Fed a diet that supports nutrition, satiation, and healthy body condition
  • No tail docking, ear notching, de-toeing, or face branding
  • If physical alterations are practiced, plans to reduce or eliminate ‘need’ and/or use pain control
  • Enrichment for all species (Poultry: pecking objects, dust bathing materials, perches or platforms, nest boxes for laying hens; Pigs: rooting substrate, manipulatable and edible material, and nesting opportunities for sows; Cattle: scratch posts)
  • Established relationship with a veterinarian and written health plan.
  • If animals cannot recover with treatment, then timely euthanasia
  • No antibiotics for growth promotion or prophylactic use
  • No hormones (cattle)
  • Selection of fit robust breeds & strains expected to grow/mature in good health; able to breed and birth without dependence on human intervention
  • No transport of sick, weak, neonatal or downed animals
  • Stunning before conscious shackling and slaughter

Option 2: Whole30 Approved products containing animal protein become certified by one of three independent animal welfare certifications recognized by the ASPCA® Shop With Your Heart program by January 31, 2021:

  • Global Animal Partnership (GAP) Step 2 or higher
  • Certified Humane
  • Animal Welfare Approved

Obtaining one of these three ASPCA-approved certifications will streamline the process of ensuring and demonstrating compliance, and comes with additional benefits, as Whole30 and the ASPCA will support and provide additional recognition via web and social media as incentive for any brand that obtains and features the logo of one of the above animal welfare certifications

Furthermore, we commit to improve key areas of wellbeing for broiler chickens. By 2024, all Whole30 Approved products containing chicken ingredients must be either GAP-certified or meet GAP’s standards on breed and housing, demonstrating compliance using third-party auditing.

  • Light
  • Litter
  • Space
  • Enrichment
  • Use of multi-stage Controlled Atmosphere Stunning processing, which is widely considered more humane.

Whole30’s Animal Welfare policy was developed in collaboration with the ASPCA® Farm Animal Welfare Department. To keep pace with advancements and knowledge of animal welfare science, industry best practice, and consumer expectation; and to ensure comprehensive animal welfare assurances are realized in the Whole30 Approved program, our standards will be periodically revisited.

Thank you for your support as we do our part to improve our food system for all. For media inquiries regarding our animal welfare standards or collaboration with the ASPCA, please email Karyn Scott at [email protected].