The Five Freedoms
Freedom Farms’ standards are based on the ‘Five Freedoms of Animal Welfare’, a framework for good animal husbandry established by the UK Farm Animal Welfare Council in 1965. The framework is sometimes referred to as Branbell’s Freedoms and is highly regarded by organisations including the Animal Welfare Institute in the US; the RSPCA in Australia, New Zealand and the United Kingdom; the World Organisation for Animal Health; the World Society for the Protection of Animals (WSPA) and are referred to in the UN Declaration on the Welfare of Animals.
Click on the headings below to learn more about what the Five Freedoms mean on for Freedom Farms producers…
Freedom from hunger and thirst by ready access to fresh water and a diet to maintain full health and vigour.
- Regular access to nutritious food and clean water.
- A management plan to control food and water-borne contamination.
- No preventative antibiotics in feed.
- All animals should be fed fairly, with sufficient space and quantity to reduce competition and bullying.
Freedom from discomfort by providing an appropriate environment including shelter and a comfortable resting area.
- All buildings that house animals must be free from features that put them at risk: harmful protrusions, sharp edges and exposed electrical wiring.
- Buildings designed to protect animals from the elements, both regular and extreme.
- Housing should have insulation and ventilation that limits exposure to hot or cold temperatures.
- Chicken’s shed doors (called pop holes) should be designed to allow easy and safe access in or out of the shed.
- Range should have shade covering available to the animals.
- NO CRATES, CAGES OR CONCRETE FATTENING PENS.
- Access to clean and dry bedding material.
Freedom from pain, injury or disease by prevention or rapid diagnosis and treatment.
- A biosecurity policy to protect animals from disease.
- Regular vet visits to monitor animals.
- Vigilant care of unwell animals.
- Any euthanasia of animals must occur humanely, and be recorded, investigated and any remedial action taken immediately.
Freedom to express natural behaviour.
This is a critical freedom. One that is often compromised as farming has become more intensive.
At all times animals must be housed in environments that allow them to express the natural behaviour and to share the company of their own kind.
This is why we say NO to crates, cages and barren concrete pens in particular.
Freedom from fear and distress by ensuring conditions and treatment which avoid mental suffering.
- Caring and responsible stockmanship is paramount.
- Consistent and peaceful handling must be used to limit stress.
- All farm staff should have a good working knowledge of animal welfare monitoring.