One Health Certification: Coming Soon to a Hog Farm Near You

What is One Health certification? And why should you care? You’ve got questions, we’ve got answers from Don Ritter, DVM. ( Portia Stewart )

A new certification program that promotes animal health and stewardship is coming soon to the pork industry. One Health Certification is a new consumer choice label that will be available for chicken, turkey and pork at first, and later will include eggs, beef and dairy. 

The goal: Create a comprehensive program that will be meaningful to consumers and raise the bar on how animals are raised, says Donald Ritter, DVM, a veterinarian with Mountaire Farms who helped develop the certification program in concert with scientists, technical experts from other protein companies and nonprofit organizations.

We caught up with Ritter at the 2019 Animal Agriculture Alliance to learn more about One Health certification. Watch Ritter explain the program here.

Don’t have time to watch? Here’s a quick summary.

“The One Health Certified Program is a triple win because first and foremost, it takes care of animals’ health promptly and responsibly,” Ritter says.

For people it's a win because of the restrictions on medically important drug use. Meat will be produced with less antimicrobial resistance bacteria potential in foodborne pathogens, he says. And it’s an environmental win because the goal of one health is to produce animals and a system that has a low carbon footprint and also manages the waste on all the participating farms.

“These programs will evolve over time in a continuous improvement process to get better as we learn from producing animals in this way and as new technologies become available,” Ritter says.

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