As animal welfare labeling claims on meat, dairy and eggs continue
to proliferate, humane-minded carnivores everywhere are starting
to get confused. When a label says "free-range", "grass-fed"
or "cage-free", is this really true? Whole Foods Market
has recently added a new "animal compassionate" label
to meat products in their stores (indicating the animal was treated
humanely up until slaughter). The federal government generally
does not regulate how farm animals are treated, nor do they verify
animal-welfare labels. The government does attempt to require
that labels be truthful and has established definitions for common
designations like "free range". Yet some third party
labeling standards, like Whole Foods new label, are actually more
rigorous than the industry norms. Two other highly credible labels
to look for include the "free-farmed" label (overseen
by the American Humane Association) and the "certified humane"
label (administered by Humane Farm Animal Care). Learn more about
animal welfare labels here: /old_articles/2006/article_3207.cfm