SPCA Certified is a food-labeling program that gives consumers assurance that the food they purchase comes from farms that raise their farm animals to a higher set of standards in Canada.
SPCA Certified farms are visited at least once a year by a trained, independent auditor who inspects the farm to the SPCA Certified animal welfare standards. A separate panel of independent experts decides if the farm meets the required standards for certification.
Products from certified farms are clearly marked with the “little red barn” logo (pictured above) for easy identification on store shelves.
Farm animal certifications include:
- Beef cattle
- Dairy cattle
- Broiler (meat) chickens
- Egg-laying chickens
SPCA Certified standards
SPCA Certified farmers do not use crowded cages or stalls. SPCA Certified farmers provide enrichment (toys, socialization, bedding) to their animals’ environment and they ensure painful practices are minimized or eliminated.
SPCA Certified farmers also ensure that:
- Egg-laying hens are free from cages
- Pregnant pigs are free from confinement in gestation stalls and farrowing crates
- Painful practices like dehorning, mulesing (sheep) and toe clipping (poultry) are prohibited
- Pain medication is used for necessary farming practices that cause pain
- Animal environments are designed to promote comfort, positive natural behaviours and healthy social interactions
- Animals are not fed antibiotics or hormones for growth enhancement
- Sick and injured animals receive immediate medical attention and follow-up
- Lameness (inability to walk properly) in farm animals is assessed and immediately addressed
Learn more about farming practices and standards
Learn more about how farm animals are raised in Canada, and how commercial farming practices measure up to SPCA Certified standards.
Below you can also learn how different farming certifications measure up:
- Compare SPCA Certified to certified organic and conventional farming practices (PDF)
- Compare certifications for eggs (PDF)
- Get the specifics on dairy farming certifications (PDF)
Where to buy SPCA Certified products
Look for the “red barn” label on your food products to know you are supporting Canadian farmers who are working to change the way your food is raised.
- Check out our interactive map of retail locations where SPCA Certified products are sold
- Meet our SPCA Certified farms