The Farm Animal Welfare Council (FAWC) has called on the government to introduce a labelling system covering welfare measures taken for animal products.

FAWC’s Michael Reiss said that the labelling system should cover the lifetime of the animal and recommended that the government introduce a voluntarily welfare labelling system as an initial step.

The EU Commission also intends to prepare a report on the introduction of a mandatory labelling regime for meat products in the EU in compliance with animal welfare standards.

Prof Reiss said he was “encouraged” that on a European and International level, labelling was moving up the political agenda and becoming more feasible.

Christopher Wathes, chairman of FAWC, said: “Consumers are increasingly concerned about the welfare characteristics of the products that they purchase.

“Retailers, caterers and other suppliers should therefore provide information that satisfies the purchaser about these characteristics.”