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FARMS welcomes animal welfare progress by Standard Chartered

Standard Chartered is a crucial bank as much of its financing is in Asia with its rapidly growing industrial livestock sector.

FARMS welcomes the updated Agribusiness Position Statement from Standard Chartered which strengthens its existing restriction on not providing financial services directly towards production systems using layer cages for poultry or caged rearing systems for livestock. The Position Statement now specifically excludes ‘gestation and farrowing crates for sows’.

Further, Standard Chartered specify that they will only provide financial services to clients who transport or slaughter livestock and poultry where the criteria of the FARMS Initiative Responsible Minimum Standards are implemented.

They also require clients to follow the IFC Good Practice Note on Improving Animal Welfare in Livestock Operations, including the Five Freedoms of animal welfare.

Standard Chartered also now have new best practice recommendations aimed at encouraging clients to:

· Refrain from prophylactic or routine use of antibiotics, unless no alternative is available.

· Implement the FARMS Initiative Responsible Minimum Standards on farm, including in Aquaculture

· Exotic leather has been added to the existing restriction on fur and angora wool

Standard Chartered points out that in agribusiness: ‘Key avoidable animal welfare risks arise from confinement of livestock and poultry in cages, painful and mutilating interventions without anaesthesia, irresponsible breeding techniques, excessively long transportation in cramped conditions, slaughter using unnecessarily painful or ineffective techniques, and where training and infrastructure are not designed with animal behaviour or welfare in mind.’ FARMS is pleased that Standard Chartered is taking these steps and urges others in the financial sector to require their clients to adopt cage-free animal production and implement at a minimum the FARMS Initiative Responsible Minimum Standards on farm animal welfare, including in Aquaculture.


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