SPCA Certified is a food-labelling program that gives consumers assurance that the food they purchase comes from farms that adhere to high standards of animal welfare.
SPCA Certified farms are visited at least once a year by a trained, independent auditor to assess whether the farm has met the SPCA Certified animal welfare standards. A separate panel of independent experts decides which farms can then earn the 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, confinement housing (e.g. cages, stalls). Further, these farmers provide enrichment 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 specific farm animal production practices in Canada, and how these common commercial farming practices measure up to SPCA Certified farming practices.
Below you can also learn how different farming certifications measure up:
- Compare SPCA Certified to certified organic and conventional farming practices (PDF)
- Get the specifics on egg farming certifications (PDF)
- Get the specifics on dairy farming certifications (PDF)
Where to buy SPCA Certified products
Look for the “little red barn” label on food products at your local grocery store to show your support for Canadian farmers who are working to change the way your food is raised.
- Check out our map of retail locations where SPCA Certified products are sold
- Get a list of SPCA Certified farms
Need more info?
Contact the SPCA Certified team with your questions.