Perdue Farms, Salisbury, Md., announced that its Coleman Natural Foods brand is now third-party verified, 100% crate-free, including both for gestation and farrowing.

Coleman Natural is said to be the first national retail brand to fully implement the new crate-free standards with USDA approval and verified by a third party. The welfare practices are established at every step, from sows to transport and harvesting, to ensure a higher quality of life for more than 300,000 pigs and 13,000 sows.

“Part of the Coleman Natural promise is doing things the right way, which isn’t always the easy way,” says Bart Vittori, vice president and general manager of Coleman Natural. “We believe everyone should have access to quality, crate-free, no-antibiotics-ever pork that comes from pigs raised to a higher standard. From Wall Street to Main Street, Coleman Natural products are made for consumers who demand better, premium proteins for their families. For more than 125 years, Coleman Natural has been pursuing higher standards for animal welfare, and the American Humane Certification is one more step in that journey. By incorporating the globally accepted Five Freedoms first developed in Europe by the Farm Animal Welfare Council, American Humane goes beyond the basics of food and shelter. That is something our customers, consumers and farmers value.”

Coleman Natural works with family farmers who share the company’s commitment to raising animals “the way nature intended.”

“We don’t believe farm animals should be fed animal byproducts or raised in an environment that requires antibiotics to keep them healthy,” says Vittori.

Coleman Natural offers a full line of fresh and fully cooked crate-free, no-antibiotics-ever pork products, including sausages, bacon, ribs and ham.