Friday, October 5, 2012

Like A Duck To Water

RSPCA Campaign

Duck Fresh Water Campaign

Dear Asda / Morrisons / Tesco /
The Co-operative Food / Waitrose

I am calling on you to improve the welfare of farmed ducks. Ducks are water birds that have evolved to be in and around water, so I find it unacceptable that the only duck meat you sell is from ducks that don't have access to one of their most basic requirements - bathing water.

I demand you stop ducking this issue at once and provide a higher welfare option for your shoppers and introduce a policy to ensure all the duck meat meat you sell comes from farms that provide full body access to water, according to RSPCA welfare standards for ducks. Please get back to me and tell me what action you're taking to address this issue.

Thank you.

Reply From Tesco

Thank you for your email raising your concerns with us about the provision of open water for ducks. Animal welfare is an important and sensitive issue for many of our customers and we take our responsibilities in this area very seriously.

We have a strong relationship with the RSPCA and wrote in 2008 to support their research into the provision of open water and duck welfare.

Although we do not currently sell any Tesco brand duck, we have discussed the issue with our suppliers, whose duck products we sell in our stores. They have informed us that all ducks supplied to us are given access to open water for water-related behavioural activities such as cleaning and preening. In addition, they are given straw bedding, natural daylight and supplementary lighting, which creates a 6 hour dark period for rest. They are reared in accordance with the Duck Assurance Scheme (DAS), part of the Red Tractor Scheme which focuses on animal welfare, as well as good environmental practice and food safety.

Thank you once again for taking the time to write to us. We are always keen to review new evidence on animal welfare and will be maintaining a close dialogue on the issue with the RSPCA, and with our suppliers.

Tesco Customer Service

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