The cared-for duck
The health and welfare of our ducks is an absolute priority for us and is at the heart of all that we do. We breed, hatch, and rear our ducks on Red Tractor assured farms here in the neighbouring counties of Suffolk and Norfolk which means they are regularly, independently audited across a wide range of standards covering animal welfare, bio security, food safety, stockmanship and the environment.
Our ducks are reared free-to-roam in light airy barns with plenty of natural light, fresh air, fresh bedding of straw every day and continuous feed and fresh water throughout the day. We believe this is best for the health and welfare of our ducklings and far better than leaving them exposed to harsh variable weather conditions and higher mortality rates, especially in Autumn and Winter (remember, ducklings are different to chicken and turkey in that when they hatch they do not have any feathers, just “duck down”, which keeps them warm but does not protect them from wind and rain).
The ducks have continuous access to water feeders and open water troughs that allow them to drink, bathe and preen but without full body immersion. Experience has demonstrated that allowing a flock of ducks full body access to (and defecation in) their drinking water greatly increases the risk of disease and the frequency of birds dying or requiring veterinary intervention.
We believe our approach in farming our ducks, in accordance with the industry’s Duck Assurance Scheme, provides the best possible outcomes for the health and welfare of the flock.
The welfare of our ducks, geese and turkeys is an absolute priority. Our duck and turkey farming and production is accredited to the Red Tractor scheme which means standards developed by experts on safety, hygiene, animal welfare and the environment have been met and that our products are fully traceable (for more information about the scheme visit www.redtractor.org.uk).
Gressingham Foods played a pivotal role in the launch of the Duck Assurance Scheme (DAS), which has been developed by the British Poultry Council (BPC) to empower producers to show their products' provenance and high standards to consumers. For more information on the DAS or to request a copy of the standards, email firstname.lastname@example.org.
Many of Gressingham’s farms are committed to the Farming and Wildlife Advisory Group’s (FWAG) Diversity of Wildlife plan – promoting biodiversity around the locations in which they operate and we are proud to support The Humane Slaughter Association, a charity that works in the UK, and internationally, through educational, scientific and technical advances, exclusively towards the highest worldwide standards of welfare for food animals during transport, marketing and slaughter (for more information please visit www.hsa.org.uk).
Part of the Bigger Picture
Our commitment to sustainability drives us to continuously improve our environmental performance from ‘farm to fork’. Through increases in efficiency and reduction in raw material consumption we will continue to meet the needs of the present without compromising future generations.
- We monitor our energy usage each year with the aim of further increasing energy efficiency.
- We are reducing the consumption of raw materials including water.
- We minimise the production of waste to landfill by encouraging re use and recycling.
- We work to the Environmental Management Protocols of ISO14001 and are committed to responsible energy management throughout our premises, plant and equipment.
- In 2012 we achieved the target of 65.2% of our duck coming from farms that are producing their own renewable energy from wind or solar power.