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Co-op moves to 100% outdoor bred pork

News Section Icon Published 14/03/2018


We are delighted to announce that from July, all the Co-op’s own-brand fresh pork, bacon, sausage, gammon and ham will be sourced from 100% outdoor-bred pigs on RSPCA Assured Farms.

Affordable higher welfare pork for all

This commitment will apply to both the Co-op’s premium and standard ranges. This gives Co-op shoppers the confidence that all their pork products are produced responsibly and ethically - and available at affordable prices.

Jo Whitfield, the Co-op’s Retail CEO, said: “The highest animal welfare standards should not just be the preserve of top-tier products and we want to ensure that the very best quality British pork is available at everyday affordable prices.”

Leading the way for change

The Co-op is joining others like Waitrose who are leading the way for change in outdoor pig production. Currently 40% of the UK pig herd are outdoor bred meaning sows are not confined in farrowing crates but are free to build their nests in straw-bedded huts and interact effectively with their piglets; straw barns give the meat pigs more space to live and the opportunity to perform important natural behaviours such as rooting, foraging and digging, making tail docking unnecessary. 

Tracey Jones, our Director of Food Business, said: “We wholeheartedly congratulate the Co-op for making this move to higher welfare pig production across both their standard and premium own-brand products. By doing so they are not only addressing key issues such as confinement and the need to provide pigs with a stimulating environment, but they are making higher welfare the norm and meeting their customers’ expectations.”

Building on success

This announcement builds on the Co-op’s already impressive higher welfare credentials having been awarded a Good Egg Award in 2008 and a Good Dairy Award in 2011.

Find out more about the work of our Food Business team here.


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If you have any further questions regarding this, or any other matter, please get in touch with us at We aim to respond to all queries within two working days. However, due to the high volume of correspondence that we receive, it may occasionally take a little longer. Please do bear with us if this is the case. Alternatively, if your query is urgent, you can contact our Supporter Engagement Team on +44 (0)1483 521 953 (lines open Monday to Friday 9am to 5pm).