Surrounded (and sometimes overtopped) by green grass, a pair of diminutive piglets peer out from the pasture at High Meadows Farm in Delhi, New York. Like all animals on farms certified by AWI's Animal Welfare Approved (AWA) program, these piglets live outdoors, on pasture. The ample space, fresh air, and social bonds they experience stand in stark contrast to conditions for animals raised in isolation, confinement and barren uniformity within industrial systems. Just as no two pigs—even littermates—are exactly alike, no two AWA farms are alike, either. On page 6 of this issue, we profile two AWA pastured pig operations—High Meadows Farm and Parker Family Farms in Hurdle Mills, North Carolina. Though the families who run these respective farms raise different breeds in different landscapes for different markets, they share a similar commitment to high standards for animal welfare.
Photo by Mike Suarez