Even though organic hens have a far better life than broilers, free-range hens or battery hens, it is nevertheless the case that they end up being slaughtered. Animal welfare is something that we consider to be extremely important, which is why our quality manager Arthur Hartman regularly visits our suppliers. This allows him to see with his own eyes whether the animals are having a better life, as well as to ensure that they are put to sleep in a respectful manner.
Yarrah buys chicken from such countries as England. The hen farms in England are within a six-kilometre radius of the abattoir. The hens are free range and live for around 82 days. In comparison, their broiler brothers are given around half the time to grow. The average weight is around 1.4 kg.
The meat from the organic hens is a little more yellow in colour due to the fact that the hens are eating grass. Obviously, they are only being given organic feed as well. Arthur checks this as well: is the feed genuinely 100% organic? The hen farmers can demonstrate this on the basis of certificates.
Catching and transporting
Organic hens’ lives come to an end at some point too, and they end up in an abattoir. Prior to this happening, they do of course have to be caught first. Catching hens is a routine task, with peace and quiet ensuring that the hens experience as little stress as possible. After all, organic hens shouldn’t be stressed hens. After being caught, the hens are loaded into cages on a pickup and taken to the abattoir. The journey takes no more than 10 minutes. Meanwhile a so-called poultry manager keeps an eye on everything. A poultry manager is a vet responsible for the animals throughout their life cycle.
The abattoir must fulfil the organic regulations and here too Arthur checks whether the hens are being treated with respect. In all the years that Arthur has been working for us, he hasn’t yet visited a single abattoir that wasn’t adhering to the strict rules.