How to choose a higher welfare Christmas ham
If you choose to buy a ham this Christmas we’ve pulled together a guide to help you make a better choice for pigs and your family
For many Australians, ham is a big part of their Christmas. However, some of the hams on Australian supermarket shelves come from countries that still keep mother pigs in cages.
Where does your Christmas ham come from?
|ALDI Specially Selected Premium Triple Smoked|
|Woolworths Home Brand Hams|
|Coles Home Brand Hams|
|Berg Deli (ALDI) Half Leg On The Bone|
|Berg Deli (ALDI) Leg Ham Portion On The Bone|
|Berg (ALDI) Maple Glazed Portion|
|Berg Deli (ALDI) Boneless Triple Smoked|
|Bertocchi Aussie Gold Pure Leg Ham|
|Bertocchi Authentic Leg Boneless|
|Bertocchi Festival Ham|
|Bertocchi Leg On Bone Quarter|
|Bertocchi Virginian Leg Boneless|
|Bertocchi Easy Cut Boneless|
|Bertocchi Supreme Gold Boneless|
|Bertocchi Semi Boneless Shoulder|
|Bertocchi Triple Hickory Boneless|
|Dandy Australian Leg|
|D’Orsogna Champagne Mini|
|D’Orsogna Honey Mini|
|D’Orsogna 100% Natural Leg|
|Tibaldi Off The Bone|
In the US and Canada, most mother pigs are still kept in cages – sow stalls – for their entire pregnancy. Cages that are so small the mother pigs don’t even have enough room to turn around. That’s 119 days of pain, distress and boredom. It’s cruel, and it must end.
European countries are better: the rules say they can only keep mother pigs in cages for 28 days, and in some countries not at all.
Thankfully, Australian pig farmers are getting mother pigs out of cages. In 2010, the industry decided to end the use of cages for all but five days, and that now applies to up to 90% of Australian mother pigs. This commitment puts Australia ahead of most other pig-producing countries.
There’s still more to do. Even in Australia, pigs could be treated better. We’re working to see an end to unnecessary mutilations, more enriched environments, and we ultimately want to get mother pigs out of confinement after birth.
You deserve to know where your ham and bacon comes from
With the ongoing crisis of African Swine Fever affecting the world’s pig population, it is more important than ever to know where your imported pork comes from
The problem for shoppers who also want to avoid lower welfare pork products is our inadequate country of origin labelling.
Australian shoppers have no way of knowing if their ham and bacon came from a higher welfare Dutch farm, or an American farm where mother pigs suffer in cages for their entire pregnancy.
Some retailers are doing the right thing and going beyond the inadequate labelling laws to give consumers more information, such as Coles and Primo. But big players like Woolworths are not giving consumers the information they deserve.
We’ve investigated the Christmas hams on supermarket shelves and given a green ranking to Australian hams, and a red to hams which don’t have any country of origin information, which are likely to be from countries with lower welfare standards. Not providing this information to you and your family is unacceptable.
Send a clear message to the pig industry and major retailers that pig welfare matters to you.