Hillandale Farms Pennsylvania Talks About American Humane Certified (AHC) Free-Range Eggs

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American Humane Certified (AHC) Free-Range Eggs is a much popular certification program. This program establishes standards for animal welfare in the production of eggs that come from free-range laying hens. Many egg farmers in the US like Hillandale Farms Pennsylvania are Cage Free American Humane certified. This program is administered by the American Humane, which is a prominent non-profit organization dedicated to promoting and protecting the welfare of animals.

Hillandale Farms Pennsylvania provides a general overview of American Humane Certified Free-Range Eggs

AHC Free-Range or Cage Free certification focuses on the welfare and good health of laying hens. These hens typically are raised in free-age system, and hence have access to outdoor areas. Being able to roam around in outdoor areas helps the hens to exhibit natural behaviors like dust bathing and foraging. American Humane certification program comprises of very specific requirements related to hen, care, housing, and management, in order to make sure that the hens have a high quality of life.

Providing hens with access to outdoor areas is among the prime requirements of AHC Free-Range Eggs certification. This program basically specifies that the hens should have unrestricted and continuous access to outdoor areas that are free from harmful environmental conditions and predators. The outdoor areas should also be designed in a proper manner to encourage the hens to engage in natural behaviors. American Humane Certified Free-Range Eggs program even sets standards for indoor housing. As per its standards, hens must have access to clean and comfortable indoor areas where they can stay protected from harsh weather conditions and predators.  The indoor areas also must have adequate ventilation, lighting, and temperature control to ensure the good health and well-being of the eggs.

AHC Free-Range Eggs certification also addresses other important aspects of hen management, such as nutrition, water quality, and health care. The program requires that hens be provided with a nutritionally balanced diet that meets their specific needs, and that they have access to clean and fresh water at all times. The program also prohibits the use of antibiotics for growth promotion, and requires that hens receive appropriate veterinary care to maintain their health and well-being. Reputed egg producers like Hillandale Farms Pennsylvania always keep such guidelines in mind.

The requirement for environmental enrichment is also an important aspect of AHC Free-Range Eggs certification. Based on the mandates of the program, perches, nest boxes, and other enrichments should be provided to the hens to promote their physical and mental well-being. Such enrichments can go a long way in encouraging the hens to express their natural behaviors and reduce stress, which is immensely important for their overall welfare. This certification program also includes standards for handling and transportation of hens. According to its guidelines, hens have to be handled and transported in a manner that reduces any kind of risk stress, injury, and discomfort. Guidelines for catching, handling, and loading hens are mentioned in addition to the type of transport vehicles and equipment to be used, to ensure the hens are transported in a safe and humane manner.

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