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LARCHMONT, N.Y. -- Eighteen months after it began carrying certified humane products, 20-store D'Agostino Supermarkets here has added five cheeses from Thorp, Wis.-based Grass Point Farms, the first national producer of certified humane pasture-based dairy products.
The chain, with locations in New York City and Westchester County, is planning to stock their milk products "in the next two weeks," Grass Point Farms spokeswoman Katie McDougall told Progressive Grocer. The retailer is also urging all of its livestock, poultry, dairy, and egg suppliers to seek 'humane-raised and handled' certification through Humane Farm Animal Care (HFAC).
As a way to help shoppers find out more about Grass Point Farms and HFAC, Grass Point Farms president Chad Pawlak is making appearances at the D'Agostino store at 3rd Ave. and 25th Street in New York City today at 11 am, and the D'Agostino store in Rye Brook, N.Y. tomorrow, also at 11 am. During his visits, Pawlak will explain the importance of HFAC and offer samples of the Grass Point Farms product line.
"A lot of people would enjoy meat and dairy more if the concern about how the animal was treated is taken away," said D'Agostino Supermarkets president Nick D'Aogstino III in a statement. "That is why we were looking for a way to be certain that the products we sell have truly earned the right to call themselves humane. We spent some time evaluating Humane Farm Animal Care. The fact that HFAC uses third-party certification and is supported by the American Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals was important to us. HFAC's credibility and Grass Point Farms products bring many benefits to the marketplace."
D'Agostino said his company learned about HFAC from a supplier.
The "Certified Humane Raised and Handled" label, launched in May 2003, assures consumers that a meat, poultry, egg or dairy product has been produced according to Humane Farm Animal Care's standards for humane farm animal treatment. Animals must receive a nutritious diet without antibiotics or hormones and must be raised with shelter, resting areas, and space sufficient to support natural behavior. Over 50 companies are currently certified to use the label.