Atria Increases Transparency in Meat Production30 October 2012
FINLAND - Atria is increasing the traceability of its meat products all the way back to the farm which has produced the animals in a bid to meet consumer demand for domestically produced meats whose origin can be fully traced.
Atria said it was the first to respond to Finnish consumers’ desire for transparency by fully disclosing the steps in its chicken production chain.
From the beginning of this year, Atria Finland’s chicken fillet product packages have displayed the name and location of the farm.
By scanning the UpCode on these packages, consumers can access the Family Farm website. Getting this information on the packages has required technological investments, since tens of thousands of chickens pass through the production process each day.
The new Kauhajoki bovine slaughterhouse will be among the most modern in Europe when it is completed in early 2013 and Atria’s beef chain will also be opened up to consumer scrutiny.
In the first phase the best cuts – steaks and roasts – will be traceable. Packaging will contain information on the name and location of the farm. Even as plans were being made for the slaughterhouse, Atria took into account customers’ and consumers’ wishes for meat to be traceable.
In Finland all products sold under the Atria brand are made using only Finnish meat. In Sweden, Atria Scandinavia has made a commitment to use domestic meat in all Lönneberga products. In Estonia, most of the meat used by Atria comes from its own five pork farms.
A survey conducted by MTT Agrifood Research Finland, a research body, in early 2012 charted corporate responsibility in the Finnish pork chain. More than 90 per cent of respondents said they buy domestic pork because they want to favour Finnish production. Consumers also favour domestic products because they trust the domestic production process.
To open up the Finnish production process, Atria Finland was the first Finnish meat producer to arrange guided tours of Finnish pork farms in September.
Atria’s contract production farms in Vihti, Rautavaara, Uusikaarlepyy and Kurikka opened their doors to visitors.
The farm visits turned out to be a success. Visitors were interested in feeding and how automatic feeding stations work, in medication, castration, the age of the animals and comparisons with foreign pork producers.