Jamie Oliver’s commitment to high-welfare meat recognised

Celebrity chef Jamie Oliver has been rewarded for supporting animal welfare by the Royal Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals’ (RSPCA).

He received the RSPCA’s highest honour for “influential engagement” in encouraging the food industry to adopt high-welfare practices. The RSPCA praised his campaigning efforts to make a change to the way animals are farmed for their meat in the UK and overseas.

“Thank you to everyone at the brilliant RSPCA for this incredible award,” he said. “It truly means a lot, and it’s a great pat on the back for everything me and my team are trying to achieve. Over the years, we’ve been fighting alongside you to make a meaningful difference to animal welfare - from my TV show Jamie’s Fowl Dinners in 2008, to the ‘food fight’ campaigns we run on Friday Night Feast, to making sure we only ever serve higher-welfare meat in Jamie’s Italian restaurants across the world.”

Oliver has previously been awarded with the RSPCA’s ‘Chicken Welfare Award’ for the positive impact he has had on improving the chicken farming.

His previous television shows have featured an interview with a free-range RSCPA Assured chicken farmer, which included footage of RSPCA Assured indoor chickens. The programme shone the spotlight on why some chickens in the UK are bred to grow so fast that they can become dangerously overweight for their age and suffer from ill-health.

“If we all keep fighting, we can make a real difference,” added Oliver. “There’s a lot still to be done but this award is a massive boost. So thank you.”

Michael Ward, interim chief executive officer of the RSCPA, added: “We are delighted to honour Jamie with the prestigious Richard Martin Gold Award for his remarkable efforts.

“Jamies’s influential engagement within the food industry has been key to driving animal welfare standards up and his work has already encouraged a huge number of producers, supermarkets and consumers to follow suit. Through his passion for food he has developed a unique way of capturing the attention of the public and educating people about the significance of high animal welfare within food consumption.

“On behalf of the RSPCA, I am extremely proud to have Jamie’s continued support and look forward to seeing his ongoing work to help make the world a better place for farmed animals.”

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