ALPHARETTA, Ga., March 24 /PRNewswire/ -- United Egg Producers (UEP), a trade association representing most U.S. egg farmers and companies, has developed a new working relationship with the Denver-based American Humane Association, the only national organization dedicated to protecting both children and animals. American Humane has a 131-year legacy of being the gold standard of animal welfare. (Logo: http://www.newscom.com/cgi-bin/prnh/20051003/CLM056LOGO ) Under terms of the agreement between the two organizations, UEP will recognize American Humane Certified(TM) animal welfare audits as also meeting UEP Certified standards if those egg producers also meet some additional criteria. The American Humane Certified program -- which is the nation's first and original animal-welfare label attesting to the humane treatment of animals involved in food production -- establishes guidelines for the production of eggs from hens in cage-free and free-range farm systems, while the UEP Certified program provides science-based guidelines for the production of eggs from hens either in modern cage production housing systems or cage-free farm systems. Under terms of the agreement, an egg farmer who passes the American Humane Certified audit, pays the fees and is a member in good standing with the UEP Certified Program and meets the UEP guidelines on 100% of their egg production, can then use the UEP Certified logo and market those eggs as UEP Certified in addition to marketing them as American Humane Certified and using the American Humane Certified logo. The advantage to an egg farmer is that they would not have to undergo and pay for a second audit of their farm, as UEP will accept the American Humane Certified animal welfare audit. "When UEP began developing science-based guidelines for the production of eggs in modern cage housing systems in the late 1990s, the American Humane Association participated in those discussions," said Gene Gregory, president of UEP. "We're pleased to renew a working relationship with them and we have always regarded them as one of the most credible animal-welfare organizations in the country." Marie Belew Wheatley, president and CEO of American Humane, said, "We are enthusiastic about this agreement between our organizations that will facilitate certification of more egg producers who are in compliance with American Humane standards. Certification by both organizations assures consumers that they will be able to find humanely produced eggs in more locations." About United Egg Producers United Egg Producers (UEP) is the nation's leading trade association for U.S. egg farmers, representing 97 percent of U.S. egg farmers, whose members produce eggs including modern cage production, cage-free, free range, organic and other specialty eggs. UEP is based in Alpharetta, GA. To learn more about the egg industry visit www.uepcertified.com. About American Humane Association Founded in 1877, the American Humane Association is the only national organization dedicated to protecting both children and animals. Through a network of child and animal protection agencies and individuals, American Humane develops policies, legislation, curricula and training programs to protect children and animals from abuse, neglect and exploitation. The nonprofit membership organization, headquartered in Denver, raises awareness about The Link(R) between animal abuse and other forms of violence, as well as the benefits derived from the human-animal bond. American Humane's regional office in Los Angeles is the authority behind the "No Animals Were Harmed"(R) end credit disclaimer on film and TV productions, and American Humane's office in Washington is an advocate for child and animal protection at the federal and state levels. American Humane meets the strong, comprehensive standards of the Better Business Bureau's Wise Giving Alliance, has been awarded the Independent Charities of America "Best in America" Seal of Approval and has received a 3-star rating from Charity Navigator, America's leading charity evaluator. Visit www.americanhumane.org to learn more.
SOURCE United Egg Producers