We have zero tolerance for any act of animal cruelty. We ensure compliance with animal care standards/codes through industry regulations and animal care assessment programs, along with awareness and training programs. We have established a clear protocol to work with suppliers and authorities to effectively deal with situations where a breach of the Animal Welfare Policy is suspected.
To provide assurance to the industry, customers and consumers, we expect milk and livestock producers to be in compliance with recognized standards for the care and handling of animals. This is evaluated through animal care assessment programs, which we expect to include a third-party validation component.
We expect our suppliers to eliminate or modify routine management practices that are unnecessary or cause pain. These include the elimination of the practice of tail docking cattle, the use of pain control when dehorning or disbudding cattle and goats, extra teat removal and castration and the prohibited use of electric cattle pods for routine handling. We expect our suppliers to implement appropriate animal care awareness and training programs including a mandatory animal care Code of Conduct that is reviewed annually.
In FY21, we celebrated the fifth anniversary of our zero-tolerance Animal Welfare Policy and broadened its scope beyond dairy to include other animals used in meat products supplied to our foodservice and retail markets. We also continued to play an active role in promoting and supporting proper animal care standards, mainly through training and partnerships.
In addition to our Animal Welfare Policy, our Position Paper on Animal Health and Welfare Issues highlights our position on important animal health and welfare aspects of livestock production that are currently outside of the direct scope of our Animal Welfare Policy. We have made significant progress in advancing these positions in certain countries for some of these issues and will consider incorporating them into further updates to our Policy.
Our global Animal Welfare Committee oversees compliance to our standards, with members representing each country where we have operations. Led by veterinarian Warren Skippon, our Director of Animal Welfare, the Animal Welfare Committee is comprised of Saputo internal senior leaders from Governmental Affairs, Milk Procurement, Corporate Communications and Sales. This Committee enables us to stay at the forefront of animal welfare best practices.
As part of applying our Animal Welfare Policy, the committee consults animal protection agencies, humane societies, governmental authorities, suppliers, customers and also works with animal welfare experts from universities and veterinary colleges.