Scrutiny over animal welfare issues in agriculture continues to expand, as social media tools provide easy sharing of horrific acts, often painting an entire industry with the same negative brush. Beef producers, like many others, are very aware of the issues and have taken the initiative to develop the Code of Practice for the Care and Handling of Beef Cattle. The code was published in 2013 and outlines science-based recommendations and requirements for sound animal husbandry.
Most producers likely handle cattle in the ways suggested by the manual, but what about those who don’t? Will there be ramifications for noncompliance? Will farms be assessed somehow? Will this code be enough to address consumer concerns around welfare issues? These are all valid questions.
We caught up with Ed Pajor, professor and research leader at the University of Calgary’s Faculty of Veterinary Medicine, at the Alberta Beef Industry Conference to address these questions. Check out our brief conversation in the video below.