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Announcing a New Grant Initiative to Improve Animal Welfare on Farms:

Washington, DC-President of the Animal Welfare Institute Cathy Liss and Director of the Animal Welfare Approved program Andrew Gunther are pleased to announce a new grant initiative that will offer funds of up to $10,000 for the sole pur­pose of improving animal welfare on farms. Current Animal Welfare Approved farmers and those who have sub­mitted an application to join the program are eligible to apply for these grants.

The Animal Welfare Approved program and food label promote the well-being of animals and the sustainability of humane family farms, uniting conscientious consumers with farmers who raise their animals with compassion. Animal Welfare Approved, with more than 600 participating farms, is “setting the standard for how farm animals should be taken care of,” according to Robert. F. Kennedy, Jr. This accreditation was recently endorsed by the World Society for the Protection of Animals as having the most stringent animal welfare standards of any third party certifier.

A farmer may submit a proposal for one or two different projects, for a total maximum grant of $10,000. Grants will be awarded based upon the projects” potential to deliver the greatest benefit to farm animals. In order to receive a grant, applicants must meet the eligibility requirements, submit an application and a budget by October 15, 2008, and propose a project that meets the purpose of this program. All applications will be evaluated by a review panel.

Examples of eligible projects include conversion of buildings; fencing and paddock division; silviculture; improvement of water services; mobile housing; develop­ment of farm plans, including farm health visits from a recognized practitioner; alternative identifica­tion methods; alternative genetics; innovative chick transportation; alternatives to antibiotic use; and improvements in the slaughter process and/or equipment. Eligible costs include design fees, contractor costs, materials, slaughter equipment, new mobile housing, and incubators.

Visit the website to download Grant Guidelines and an Application Form or by contacting Julie Munk at (703) 836-4300.

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