From Application to Certification
We’re confident our market-leading, third-party certified labels will help you demonstrate your stewardship, values and sustainable practices to your customers. AGW’s family of trusted certifications includes:
- Certified Animal Welfare Approved by AGW: Our flagship, foundational certification program and all AGW farmers and ranchers are required to meet these baseline standards.
- Certified Grassfed by AGW and Certified Non-GMO by AGW: Optional, additional accreditations for farmer and ranchers who are applying for—or are already certified according to—our Certified Animal Welfare Approved by AGW program. Certified Non-GMO by AGW is also available to food producers.
- Certified Organic by AGW: coming soon!
Participation in AGW’s certification programs is entirely voluntary, but it requires significant commitment and dedication from farmers and ranchers who successfully apply. In return, you will benefit from world-leading farm certifications and wide-ranging support services worth hundreds—if not thousands—of dollars every year!
Here’s a step-by-step guide from application to certification:
- Read the relevant standards for the species you wish to certify (and any additional programs). Our standards cover everything from breeding to feed, shelter to slaughter. Make sure you can meet the required standards (or you are willing to do so) and you understand the records and plans you are required to keep.
- AGW certification covers birth-through-slaughter, which means we’ll audit your farm and review your slaughter process (if applicable). Please contact your slaughter plant before you apply to discuss your plans, and confirm they are open to a review by one of our trained slaughter specialists. (If you slaughter your animals on your farm premises, we’ll make arrangements with you directly.)
- You’re now ready to apply online (or by mail)—it should take less than 20 minutes! Please get in touch with our office if you would prefer paper copies of the standards and/or application form.
- Our Eligibility Coordinator will get in touch within 7 working days to go through your application and set up a farm audit (and plant visit, if applicable). Audits are conducted at least once a year to confirm compliance.
- Get ready for your farm audit! To minimize our costs, we’ll try to group your farm audit with others nearby. We promise to arrange your audit as quickly as possible, but please be patient if it takes a few weeks to schedule.
- After your farm audit, the certification review process usually takes 4-6 weeks, so sit tight! Remember: This is not a “pass/fail” program. If you need to make any changes to achieve compliance, we will support you in finding a solution that works for you and your farm.
- Sign and return your paperwork! Once we receive your signed certification affidavit and your farm is approved, you will receive a Welcome Pack. You can then start using our logo(s) and access our full range of services.
- Finally, your regional Farmer and Marketing Outreach Coordinator will be standing by to help promote your farm and new certification—and welcome you to the program!