Capra received GAP’s level five animal welfare rating, which it also claimed was a first for a US-based company.
GAP, which is one of the largest animal welfare certification labelling programs in the US, reviewed the living conditions, emotional wellbeing, management, handling and care and diet of the lambs for its entire life.
According to GAP, companies who receive a level five certification must ensure lambs and their parents are raised on pasture for their entire lives. To also achieve the rating, GAP checks whether animals have received any antibiotics, growth hormones or animal by-products.
Capra Foods’ founder Craig Jones said the certification would enable consumers to identify that its lambs were raised ethically.
“Our group of family ranches throughout Texas put a lot of time and effort into ensuring we raise our animals as nature intended – 100% grass-fed, free to roam on pasture and free from antibiotics,” said Jones.
“We feel motivated by both our personal values and by the increase in consumer demand from more discerning meat-eaters who care about the welfare and diet of the animals they consume and are willing to pay a premium for it.”
Capra Foods’ farmers raise Dorper sheep, which produce leaner cuts of meat as opposed to wool sheep, across health-orientated retailers and premium restaurants throughout the US.