A couple of years ago, Coles became the first major supermarket in Australia to offer customers a range of RSPCA Approved chicken products nationally. This move, which means chickens are raised in an enriched barn environment, lifted the standards on-farm for chickens – one of Australia’s most intensively farmed animals. It also meant that Coles could offer all Australians humanely farmed chicken. Now, after working closely with its suppliers, Coles is pleased to add to its shelves its own brand of free range RSPCA Approved chicken.
Launching initially in New South Wales and Victoria, the new Coles Free Range RSPCA Approved Chicken is perfect for those customers who are looking for chicken that has been raised with animal welfare as a priority.
Coles says animal welfare is important to its customers and is committed to offering a range of higher welfare options so they can make informed choices.
Here’s what you need to know about the new Coles Free Range RSPCA Approved Chicken range and the RSPCA Approved logo:
Standards focused on animal welfare
Birds are raised to the RSPCA’s detailed animal welfare standards. Publicly available, these standards are holistic and focussed on providing for the wellbeing of the chickens, both when indoors (where they spend a lot of time) and when enjoying the outdoors.
Regular on-farm assessments
As part of the RSPCA Approved Farming Scheme, farms are visited by specialised RSPCA Assessors at least twice a year. These are rigorous assessments with RSPCA Assessors visiting all areas where the animals are housed, ensuring that the RSPCA’s standards are being met. This includes checking that the chickens have easy access to the outdoors and that the outdoor area is attractive to birds, by providing shade and vegetation so they have room to explore and forage with protection from predators.
Coles also works closely with farmers and producers to improve animal welfare. To understand the challenges faced by its suppliers, the Coles team says it gets out in the fields and facilities to help drive innovation in a collaborative way.
A comfortable barn
Chickens, even free range, spend most of their time inside large barns, so having access to shelter is an important part of free range life. At night, birds on RSPCA Approved farms rest in enriched barns. These spaces give the chickens room to move, places to perch and quality litter covering the floor to scratch and dust bathe.
Access to the outdoors
Once birds have grown enough adult feathers and can therefore safely enjoy the outdoors, they have access to the range during the day for a minimum of eight hours. With access to a quality range, the birds can decide how they want to spend their time. With plenty of space to move, they’re free to forage and explore.
Importantly, farmers closely monitor weather conditions to ensure chickens are protected from the elements during extreme conditions.
All RSPCA Approved chicken is sourced from Australian farms.
The Coles Free Range RSPCA Approved Chicken line originates from central Victoria. This means that when you choose Coles Free Range RSPCA Approved Chicken, you’re supporting Aussie farmers passionate about farming to higher animal welfare standards.
Coles currently has the largest range of RSPCA Approved products in Australia. Not only do they stock a wide range of RSPCA Approved chicken, pork and turkey (Christmas period) products under the Coles label, they’re also proudly stocking RSPCA Approved brand Happy Chicken Eggs.
With the launch of Coles Free Range RSPCA Approved Chicken, customers are provided with more options to choose higher welfare. By looking for the RSPCA Approved logo on pack, customers can feel confident that their product was sourced from a farm where animal welfare is prioritised and that’s good news for customers, farmers and animals.