The List of 2011 Top Food Trends
Humane food has hit the hot list of top food trends in 2011 as more consumers are questioning where their food comes from and how it was produced. US based food trends expert Phil Lempert’s says, “Humane is one of those hot spots that may surpass organic foods. People have discovered that organic doesn’t necessarily mean that it’s healthier or better. What we’ve discovered is people are being more conscious about where their food comes from with a new focus on humane.”
While these are some US trends, animal welfare organisations and retailers are finding the exact same thing in Australia where people are questioning what labels and packaging actually means and are wanting to purchase higher welfare products. The growth of free range eggs in supermarkets over the last few years is clear evidence of this and some stores no longer stock eggs that are produced by hens in battery cages.
Australia’s leading animal welfare organisation, the RSPCA advises, “People are asking which eggs and meat are welfare friendly and which products they should purchase to ensure farm animals have been treated humanely. It’s pleasing to see that consumers are becoming more conscious of the conditions of Australia’s farm production animals and want to buy humanely produced food at their supermarket and butcher and also when eating out.”
The RSPCA has been working in this area for well over a decade, improving the lives of Australia’s farm production animals by encouraging the uptake of humanely produced food. Under the RSPCA Approved Farming Scheme, egg, pork, chicken and turkey farmers work with the RSPCA to meet the RSPCA’s production standards. Farms under the scheme are assessed by the RSPCA at least twice a year and their products can bear the RSPCA logo on pack upon approval. A list of RSPCA approved products and stockists can be found at www.rspca.org.au/shophumane.
Humane is not only a growing trend for supermarkets. People are also looking to eat humanely produced eggs and meat when dining out. The RSPCA encourages cafes and restaurants to serve humanely produced food and more than 140 businesses have committed to the RSPCA’s Choose Wisely program by serving eggs, chicken and pork produced from animals that have been farmed humanely. These businesses acknowledge the growing consumer demand for humanely produced food and in turn, are acknowledged on the RSPCA’s Choose Wisely website.
Next time you’re eating out, encourage your local eating spot to serve humanely produced food and ask them to register with the RSPCA’s Choose Wisely initiative www.choosewisely.org.au.
Written by RSPCA contributing writer Hope Bertram