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Programme Definitions

These definitions are designed to be read in conjunction with A Greener World’s published Animal Welfare Approved standards. They represent the definitions that auditors and farmers will use for programme descriptions and auditing.

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  • a

  • Abnormal behaviorAny behavior considered to be outside the normal behavior pattern for animals within a particular context, class and age.
  • AbuseAny physiological or emotional mistreatment of an animal including bodily harm, not providing adequate feed or water, not taking action to treat a sick or injured animal, unduly scaring or intimidating an animal or any other action that could cause suffering. Abuse is prohibited under Animal Welfare Approved standards.
  • AdvertiseDescribe or draw attention to a fact in a public forum. Advertising could be either spoken word or written.
  • Agricultural landLand used for agricultural production, whether crops or livestock.
  • AgrobiodiversityAgrobiodiversity is the result of natural selection processes and the careful selection and inventive developments of farmers, herders and fishers over millennia. agrobiodiversity is a vital sub-set of biodiversity. Many people’s food and livelihood security depend on the sustained management of various biological resources that are important for food and agriculture. Agricultural biodiversity, also known as agrobiodiversity or the genetic resources for food and agriculture, includes: Harvested crop varieties, livestock breeds, fish species and non-domesticated (wild) resources within field, forest, rangeland including tree products, wild animals hunted for food and in aquatic ecosystems (e.g. wild fish); Non-harvested species in production ecosystems that support food provision, including soil micro-biota, pollinators and other insects such as bees, butterflies, earthworms, greenflies; and Non-harvested species in the wider environment that support food production ecosystems (agricultural, pastoral, forest and aquatic ecosystems).
  • AgrochemicalsRefers to the broad range of pesticides, including insecticides, herbicides, and fungicides.
  • AgroecologyAgroecology is a scientific discipline, a set of practices and a social movement. As a science, it studies how different components of the agroecosystem interact. As a set of practices, it seeks sustainable farming systems that optimise and stabilise yields. As a social movement, it pursues multifunctional roles for agriculture, promotes social justice, nurtures identity and culture, and strengthens the economic viability of rural areas. Family farmers are the people who hold the tools for practicing agroecology. They are the real keepers of the knowledge and wisdom needed for this agenda. Therefore, family farmers around the world are the keys elements for producing food in an agroecological way.
  • Air pollutionThe presence of toxic chemicals or compounds (including those of biological origin) in the air, at levels that pose a health risk.
  • Alighting railPerch or rail in front of the nest box that allows the bird easy access to the box.
  • Allowed inputAllowed inputs are defined as products permitted for use in Certified Regenerative farming.
  • AmbulatoryAble to engage in an unrestricted walking pattern with proper weight bearing on all legs.
  • AmendmentAlteration to the language or provision of a standard that is made or proposed to be made.
  • AnalgesiaInsensibility to pain without loss of consciousness.
  • AnestheticA product used to temporarily numb an area in order for a surgical operation to take place (most common use in animal production is "local anesthetic".)
  • AnimalRecognised farm animals that are raised for meat, dairy or fibre.
  • Animal by productsProducts commonly used as feed ingredients that are derived from unused parts of other animals, for example meat and bone meal, feather meal and/or manure, eggs and hatchery waste. Feeding animal by-products is prohibited under Animal Welfare Approved standards.
  • Anoxic gasesGases with no oxygen content used for stunning and/or slaughter of pigs and poultry. Because there are no receptors in the brain for these gases the bird or animal cannot perceive that it is going into an environment where there is no oxygen.
  • AntibioticsA family of drugs used for the purpose of treating or preventing the outbreak of bacterial infection. (Under the AGW standards animals must be managed to keep them in good health and routine use of antibiotics is banned. Any sick or injured animal must be treated and this treatment could include antibiotics.)
  • AppealA request to AGW to re-evaluate a decision or standard.
  • ApplicantA person who applies for AGW certification.
  • ApplicationAn official request for something.
  • Application pendingAn application that has not yet been seen by the Approval Board.
  • ArcA moveable shelter for pigs or poultry.
  • ArsenicA growth promoter used by conventional agriculture.
  • Artificial inseminationUsing an instrument to introduce semen collected from a male into a female for the purposes of animal breeding.
  • Assessment of riskA risk assessment is the identification of activities carried out on the holding, and potential risks and opportunities associated with them. A risk assessment allows you to assess the likelihood of your activities causing harm to the environment. This includes describing potential hazards and impacts before taking precautions to reduce the risks. There are five key steps to carrying out a risk assessment. You need to: identify any hazards, i.e. possible sources of harm describe the harm they might cause evaluate the risk of occurrence and identify precautions record the results of the assessment and implement precautions review the assessment at regular intervals
  • AuditA physical visit to compare a production system with a set of fixed protocols. (See also: Desktop Audit, Remote Audit)
  • b

  • Bare landLand that has been left fallow with no cover crop.
  • BaselineA clearly defined starting point from where implementation begins, improvement is judged, or comparison is made. The measured conditions at the start of certification.
  • Beak clipping-trimming-tippingRemoving all or part of the bird beak, normally practiced to avoid birds pecking each other as a result of overcrowding or other production stresses. This is prohibited under AGW standards.
  • BeddingMaterials for animals to lie or sleep on, usually straw, shavings etc (see also litter).
  • BiodiversityBiodiversity is a term used to describe the enormous variety of life on Earth. It can be used more specifically to refer to all of the species in one region or ecosystem.
  • BiosecurityAn important management practice to prevent the introduction or spread of disease and hence avoid the unnecessary use of drugs (antibiotics).
  • BiotechnologyThe manipulation (as through genetic engineering) of living organisms or their components to produce useful usually commercial products (such as pest resistant crops, new bacterial strains, or novel pharmaceuticals). For the purpose of the Certified Non-GMO by AGW standard, biotechnology including, but not limited to meganucleases and clustered regularly interspaced short palindromic repeats (CRISPR), transcription activator-like effector nucleases (TALEN), RNA-dependent DNA methylation (RdDM) and reverse breeding (RB), agro-infiltration, oligonucleotide-directed mutagenesis (ODM), zinc finger nucleases (ZFN), RNA interference (RNAi), will be considered GMO.
  • Black waterBlack water that is in contact with fecal matter, sewage water.
  • BloatThe swelling of the rumen of cattle, sheep or goats from fermentation of green food, particularly lush clover pastures, which causes respiratory distress and, in very rare cases, death (also see feedlot bloat).
  • Blue waterBlue water is freshwater, surface or groundwater. Blue water is the water from lakes, streams, glaciers and snow.
  • BoarAn un-castrated male pig.
  • Body condition scoreA system of measuring how thin or fat an animal is by reference to a standardized scale.
  • BrandingMaking a permanent mark on an animal using extreme heat or extreme cold. Some state laws require the identification of cattle by branding.
  • Breeding stockA group of animals used for the purpose of planned breeding.
  • BroilerA chicken bred and raised for meat.
  • BroodingThe period from hatching until chicks no longer need a heat source for survival. Heat can be provided either by a broody hen or by a unit containing a controlled heat source called a brooder.
  • BrowseNon-grass material eaten by goats to satisfy dietary requirements. Goats given a choice will obtain up to 50% of their feed inputs from browse. Browse is normally shrubby taller material. (Browsing: finding and eating browse)
  • BuckMale rabbit.
  • Buffer zoneBuffer zones are an area of cropped land adjacent to watercourses (including ditches and dry ditches) that cannot be sprayed. They are designed to protect aquatic organisms (including plants, fish, and insects) from potential toxicity caused by some plant protection products, where a risk has been identified during the risk assessment process.
  • BullAn un-castrated male bovine animal.
  • Bunk feedProviding supplementary feed from a fixed trough.
  • c

  • CAFOConcentrated or Confined Animal Feeding Operation. See Confinement Feeding Operation Beef and Confinement Feeding Operation Pork
  • Caged systemsBirds or animals are kept in confined spaces, which inherently reduce the space and freedom of movement of the bird or animal. These systems are prohibited under Animal Welfare Approved standards.
  • CalfA young bovine animal.
  • CannibalismAn abnormal behavior when pigs or poultry inflict injury and then consume blood or other tissues from others of the same species.
  • Cap carbonTo maintain carbon in the soil.
  • CastrationThe removal or destruction of the testes.
  • CattleA bovine animal. Those kept primarily for meat are called "beef cattle" while the animals kept primarily for producing milk are called "dairy cattle."
  • Caustic pasteA chemical substance that destroys the cells in the horn bud of a young animal when topically applied, so that the horn does not grow further.
  • Chemical shearingUse of an injectable protein that causes all of the wool follicles on the sheep to break so the fleece drops off. This practice is prohibited under Animal Welfare Approved standards.
  • ChickA newly hatched chicken.
  • ChuteWalkway designed for moving or loading animals.
  • Clipping teethPiglets are born with teeth known as needle teeth. Some farmers grind, file or clip these when the piglets are newborn as they believe that otherwise the piglets will injure each other or the sow. This practice is prohibited under AGW standards. (Clipping (needle) teeth)
  • Cloned animalsIdentical offspring created by artificial genetic engineering.
  • ColdConditions when animal comfort cannot be maintained by provision of suitable housing, shelter and/or bedding. AWA standards require the provision of heat in these circumstances.
  • ColonyIndividual birds of the same species living closely together. Within a larger flock there can be small groups.
  • ColostrumThe milk produced by female mammals in the first days after giving birth. This milk has a higher fat content than normal milk and is particularly rich in proteins and antibodies. A young animal needs to receive sufficient colostrum so that it can acquire immunity.
  • Comb trimmingCutting the fleshy crest on the head of birds. This practice is prohibited under AGW standards.
  • Communal farrowingA system where sows have free access to both individual pens or huts where they can nest and give birth, and to a larger pen or barn area where they can interact with other sows in the group.
  • Communal nest boxAn area for birds to lay eggs that allows several birds to enter and lay at once.
  • Competent personSomeone who has acquired the knowledge to safely and humanely carry out a specific task or operation.
  • CompliantConforming to requirements or standards.
  • ConeA cone shaped restraining tool into which poultry can be placed immediately prior to stunning and slaughter to keep them still.
  • Confinement feedingThe practice of raising farmed animals in confinement at a high stocking density. Animals do not have access to pasture or range and are raised on concrete, slats or bare earth (Also see Feedlot).
  • Contract workerThe differences between an employee and a contract worker can be subtle, but generally, an employee works full-time, part-time or casually and has to work as the employer directs them. A contract worker, on the other hand, works the hours required to do a task and has more control over the way they work.
  • Controlled Atmosphere KillingA process by which animals and birds are exposed to a mixture of gases in the air that, through breathing in, will kill the animals or birds.
  • Controlled Atmosphere StunningA process by which animals and birds are exposed to a mixture of gases in the air that, through breathing in, will induce the animals or birds into unconsciousness.
  • CooperativeAn organization formed by a group of farmers to achieve some or all of the advantages of large-scale marketing, purchasing and education. (agricultural)
  • CornstoverThe dried remains of leaves and stalks after harvesting maize.
  • CowA female bovine animal that has borne a calf.
  • Cow-calf operationThe keeping of a breeding herd of cows and production of weaned calves.
  • Critically Non-CompliantA farm is CNC when at audit it is found not to comply with standards that are deemed critical to ensuring good welfare.
  • CrushA device specifically designed to hold an animal safely during a procedure that requires restraint of the animal.
  • CubiclePartitioned compartment in a building, usually with a raised curb of a size that allows one dairy animal to enter and lie down.
  • CullAn unproductive or unsuitable animal or bird selected for removal from the herd or flock.
  • CullingPermanent removal of animals or birds from a herd or flock.
  • CultivationTurning over, mixing, or otherwise plowing the soil. (Also see Inversion)
  • d

  • DaytimeDaytime starts within 2 hours of sunrise and ends at sunset.
  • De-beakingThe removal of part of the beak or bill of birds. This practice is prohibited under AGW standards. (see also de-billing, beak clipping, tipping and trimming)
  • De-billingThe removal of part of the beak or bill of birds. This practice is prohibited under AGW standards. (see also de-billing, beak clipping, tipping and trimming)
  • De-clawingThe removal of the claws or toes of birds. This practice is prohibited under AGW standards. (see also De-toeing)
  • DehorningThe removal of an adult animal's horns (see also disbud). This practice is prohibited under AGW standards.
  • De-scentingRemoving the scent glands near the base of the horns of male goats. This practice is prohibited under AGW standards.
  • De-snoodingThe removal of the snood or fleshy bit on the beaks of turkeys. This practice is prohibited under AGW standards.
  • De-spurringRemoval of the spurs of male breeding birds. This practice is prohibited under AGW standards.
  • De-toeingThe removal of the claws or toes of birds. This practice is prohibited under AGW standards. (see also De-clawing)
  • DebrisAnything that would not naturally occur in the environment in which it is found. Debris could include scrap metal, garbage or fallen tree branches which could cause a risk to the animals.
  • DeforestationClearing of virgin forests, or intentional destruction or removal of trees and other vegetation for agricultural, commercial, housing, or firewood use without replanting (reforesting) and without allowing time for the forest to regenerate itself. Adapted from: http://www.businessdictionary.com/definition/Deforestation.html
  • DenudedA pasture or pen where the majority of the surface area is bare earth rather than vegetation.
  • DepopulationThe removal of an entire herd or flock of animals from the farm or production system due to sale, slaughter or euthanasia.
  • Derives a share of livelihoodThe farmer receives income from the work carried out on the farm.
  • DerogationA considered allowance given in some instances when the welfare of the birds or animals is not compromised such that a farmer may be given permission to do something that falls outside the standards.
  • Desktop auditWhere physical or digital information is reviewed remotely to ensure compliance with published standards. Note: this is an extreme situation and should not normally take the place of a physical audit. (See also: Audit, Remote Audit)
  • DewlapLoose skin hanging from the lower jaw and/or throat area.
  • DisbudThe removal of growing horns or the prevention of the growth of horn buds in young ruminants.
  • Disc ringA ring inserted into the top edge of the nose of the pig - the most sensitive area of the nose - in order to reduce or eliminate rooting behavior. This practice is prohibited under Animal Welfare Approved standards.
  • DistributorA facility that does not produce products but sells or distributes certified AGW product(s).
  • Double-musclingAnimals deliberately bred to carry a particular gene that results in a visibly distinct overgrowth of muscle resulting from an increase in the number of muscle fibers relative to normal animals. Selection for double-muscling where this leads to routine cesarean section is prohibited.
  • Downed animalsAnimals unable to get on their feet.
  • Dry matter basisA system of comparing or calculating the intake of different feeds by assessing all as if they have zero moisture content. (Daily dry matter basis is the quantity provided or consumed in a 24 hour period.)
  • Dual purpose breedsBreeds of animals and birds that are productive in more than one area of food production, for example cattle raised for both meat and milk production and breeds of poultry considered capable of producing both meat and eggs.
  • Dual(production system) A farming system that promotes some of its same species animal products under a certified system/label or by its own claims, while raising the remainder of its same species animals using non-certified practices. (See also split production system).
  • DuckFemale of the species or a generic term for the species.
  • DucklingA newly hatched duck.
  • Dust bathA behavior pattern whereby birds dig themselves a hole in the ground and flick dirt over themselves as part of a routine to keep their feathers clean and eliminate mites and lice. (see also dust bathing)
  • e

  • Ear taggingIdentification of an animal by inserting a plastic or metal tag into the ear which may have an individual number printed on it or may carry a radio frequency transponder.
  • EcologyEcology is the study of interactions among living things and their environment. It provides new understanding of these vital systems as they are now, and how they may change in the future.
  • Economically sustainableEconomic sustainability refers to practices that support long-term economic growth without negatively impacting social, environmental, and cultural aspects of the community.
  • EcosystemThe complex of living organisms, their physical environment, and all their interrelationships in a particular unit of space.
  • Educational purposeA farm that functions as a practical demonstration to promote and educate other farmers and/or the public about high animal welfare practices. Companies practicing dual production would be unable to use this derogation.
  • Electric cow trainerA device that is placed a few inches above a cow to prevent her from relieving herself if she is not far enough out on the platform of her stall by administering electric shock when she arches her back to urinate or defecate. This practice is prohibited under AGW standards.
  • Embryo transferA process to remove a developing embryo from a donor mother for implantation into another recipient female. This practice is prohibited under AGW standards.
  • Endangered speciesAn endangered species is a type of organism that is threatened by extinction. Species become endangered for two main reasons: loss of habitat and loss of genetic variation.
  • EnvironmentThe air, water, minerals, plants and animals and all other external factors that surround and affect a plant, animal or other life form.
  • ErosionErosion is the gradual destruction and removal of rock or soil in a particular area by rivers, the sea, or the weather.
  • Oestrus inducing substancesThe use of hormones to artificially manage the breeding cycle. The routine use of this practice is prohibited under AGW standards.
  • EuthanasiaEnding the life of an animal humanely by using a method that produces rapid unconsciousness and subsequent death without evidence of pain or distress.
  • EweAn adult female sheep.
  • Exceptionally high welfareA system that in the opinion of the standards board exemplifies or demonstrates welfare that has been recognized as an important example of its type.
  • ExsanguinationBleeding out of an animal or bird.
  • Extensive grazingA system where animals are kept with a large area of land available per animal and where animals may stay on one extensive grazing range for months at a time.
  • f

  • Fallen debrisThe remains of something broken down or destroyed, such as branches and leaves of a tree. (See also: Woody Debris)
  • Family farmA farm rented or owned on which a family or individual owns the animals, is responsible for management decisions and participates in the day to day labor to manage the farm operation and its animals, and derives a share of the family's or individual's livelihood from that farm.
  • Family farm networksVoluntary groupings among independent family farmers for a common sales and marketing benefit.
  • FarrowThe process of a sow giving birth to a litter of piglets.
  • Farrowing crateA cage or other strictly enclosed space in which a sow is confined to give birth to and suckle her piglets and where the sow movements are restricted so she cannot turn around or otherwise have free movement. Crates are prohibited under Animal Welfare Approved standards.
  • Farrowing hutA hut in which a sow gives birth to and suckles her piglets.
  • Farrowing penAn enclosure in which a sow is kept to give birth to and suckle her piglets and in which she has freedom of movement within the pen.
  • Fattening periodWhen an animal is being managed to be ready for slaughter and is laying down fat as well as muscle as it grows.
  • Feather peckingThere is benign feather pecking, which may be part of the process of establishing a pecking order within the flock and should not be of major concern, and there is aggressive feather pecking where birds may be seriously hurting each other, leaving open bleeding wounds.
  • Feeder animalAnimals being raised for meat which have been weaned but are not yet in the fattening period. (See also store animal.)
  • Feeding bunksTroughs usually constructed of concrete or wood that can be used to hold feed for cattle.
  • FeedlotThe practice of raising farmed animal in confinement at a high stocking density. Animals do not have access to pasture or range and are raised on concrete, slats or bare earth (Also see Confinement Feeding).
  • Feedlot bloatThe swelling of the rumen of cattle, sheep or goats from fermentation of diets with high levels of grain which causes respiratory distress and regularly kills thousands of cattle per year.
  • FertilitySoil fertility is the capacity to receive, store and transmit energy to support plant growth. It is the component of overall soil productivity that deals with its available nutrient status, and its ability to provide nutrients out of its own reserves and through external applications for crop production.
  • FertilizerAn organic or inorganic material of natural or synthetic origin used to supply one or more nutrients essential to the growth of plants. This does not include liming materials.
  • Filing(needle teeth) Piglets are born with teeth known as needle teeth. Some farmers grind, file or clip these when the piglets are newborn as they believe that otherwise the piglets will injure each other or the sow. This practice is prohibited under AGW standards.
  • Fill dirtSoil used for filling, that is, found within or contemporaneously placed within a cavity, or a supply of soil for use as fill.
  • Financial planningFinancial planning is the process of estimating the capital required and determining its competition. It is the process of framing financial policies in relation to procurement, investment and administration of funds of an enterprise.
  • Financial SeparationSeparate financial records must be kept for AWA and non-AWA livestock. These must be clear, distinct and enable the auditor to identify sales and invoices for the separate AWA and non-AWA units.
  • FinishingWhen an animal is the right weight and has the right amount of fat cover to go to slaughter for meat it is considered to be "finished".
  • Finishing systemsThe methods the farmer uses to bring animals to finish.
  • First aid equipmentCollections of life saving equipment that are used by paramedic staff in cases of emergency to increase the life of a victim until a time when the injured can be transferred to a permanent hospital facility.
  • FlockA collection or group of animals or birds.
  • FlooringThe natural or artificial ground surface area in housing, handling and enclosed shelter areas used by birds and animals. Natural flooring would include the ground or pasture surface. Artificial flooring would include wood or concrete.
  • Fly strikeThe infestation of a live animal with the maggot or larvae of a fly - usually on a sheep or lamb. Eggs are laid on areas soiled with urine or feces and the larvae then hatch and tunnel into the living tissue causing infection which if left untreated can cause death.
  • ForageCrops consumed in a green state by animals or those crops preserved by drying or ensiling, but it can also mean to rummage in search of food.
  • ForbForbs are herbaceous (not woody), broadleaf plants that are not grass-like.
  • Forced moultingBringing birds into moult artificially, which is usually done by restricting feed and sometimes water, in order to control and boost the laying cycle. This practice is prohibited under AGW standards.
  • Forced or involuntary labourForced labour is any work or service which people are forced to do against their will, under threat of punishment. Almost all slavery practices contain some element of forced labour. Adapted from: https://www.antislavery.org/slavery-today/forced-labour/
  • Foster cowA cow that is rearing a calf she not give birth to.
  • Free rangeA system of keeping animals and birds where they can run free on pastures and ranging areas. Note: This is the Animal Welfare Approved definition of free range, the USDA definition does not necessarily mean that animals are on pasture.
  • Free stallStall partitions the cows can enter and exit at will.
  • Freedom to associateFreedom of association is one of the most basic rights enjoyed by humans. It ensures that every individual is free to organise and to form and participate in groups, either formally or informally.
  • Freeze brandingA form of permanent identification using a super-cold iron that alters the color producing pigment cells in the animal's hide so that white or colorless hair grows wherever the iron was placed.
  • FriableMaterial that is crumbly or easily broken with finger or hand pressure into small fragments (of litter or bedding).
  • Fugitive dustFugitive dust is particulate matter (particle pollution) that becomes airborne from activities such as construction, commercial mining, demolition and soil erosion from wind. fugitive dust is an open, or nonpoint, source of air pollution since it does not originate from a specific source such as a stack, chimney or vent. Under certain conditions, fugitive dust can be a public nuisance and may be harmful to human health. It is, therefore, a regulated pollutant that must be minimised.
  • Full-time employeeThe employer typically determines the number of hours to be worked in order to reach full-time, but in general, it typically ranges between 32 hours to 40 hours in a work-week.
  • Further ProcessorA facility that processes, packages or labels a product that contains ingredient(s) currently certified by AGW or eligible for AGW certification.
  • g

  • Gait scoringA system measuring how well an animal or bird moves and whether or not an animal or bird is lame by reference to the scale.
  • Genetic selectionThe deliberate selection of animals or birds in a breeding program.
  • Genetically engineeredThe group of applied techniques of genetics and biotechnology used to cut up and join together genetic material and especially DNA from one or more species of organism and to introduce the result into an organism in order to change one or more of its characteristics.
  • Genetically Modified Organism (GMO)An organism whose genome has been artificially altered through biotechnology to express traits that would not naturally occur as a result of traditional breeding or natural recombination. Scientific methods used to produce GMOs include reproductive cloning.
  • Gestation crateCage or stall in which a sow is confined for the period of pregnancy and in which she has restricted options of movement. Crates are prohibited under the AGW standards.
  • GiltA young female pig that has not produced a litter.
  • GizzardThe muscular stomach of a bird in which food is ground up.
  • Glue boardsA tray or board coated in a sticky adhesive that captures and immobilizes rodents on contact.
  • GogglesDevice attached to a bird's beak to make it harder for them to see each other. This practice is prohibited under AGW standards.
  • Good collection practicesGood collection practices are a set of principles, regulations and technical recommendations applicable to collection (harvest), processing and food transport, addressing human health care, environment, protection and improvement of worker conditions and their families.
  • Good faith attemptGood Faith Attempt: An implied contractual term defined as "what a reasonable person would determine is a diligent and honest effort under the same set of facts or circumstances."
  • Good standingStatus of a business (farm or slaughter plant) which has been audited or reviewed within the required schedule and is in compliance with all AGW standards OR has an approved corrective action plan, the conditions and timelines of which are being met. Businesses must not have taken any action since their last review or audit that could affect compliance with AGW standards and must not have been found guilty of any animal welfare offenses. For farms, compliance with AWA standards includes using recommended slaughter plants.
  • GrasslandAn area where grasses and forbs (non-woody, flowering plants) are the dominant type of plant cover.
  • Green waterGreen water is soil moisture that came from precipitation.
  • Grey waterGrey water is polluted water which has not been in contact with fecal matter. It can be the product of domestic bathing, laundry, dishwashing, or water polluted by agricultural inputs.
  • GrievancesThe dissatisfaction of worker with what he expects from the company and its management. An employee grievance is caused when there is a gap between what the employee expects and what he receives from the employer. Adapted from: https://www.mbaskool.com/business-concepts/human-resources-hr-terms/2580-employee-grievance.html
  • Grinding(needle teeth) Piglets are born with teeth known as needle teeth. Some farmers grind, file or clip these when the piglets are newborn as they believe that otherwise the piglets will injure each other or the sow. This practice is prohibited under AGW standards.
  • GritSmall fragments of various substances fed to poultry, including soluble grit, to balance calcium lost by egg laying birds, and insoluble grit, such as flint, to assist the gizzard in grinding food.
  • Ground waterThe water beneath the surface of the ground, consisting largely of surface water that has seeped down: the source of water in springs and wells.
  • Growth promotersA substance included in an animal or bird's feed which improves feed conversion and /or increases daily weight gain. Antibiotics can act as growth promoters. Growth promoters are prohibited under Animal Welfare Approved standards.
  • Growth rateHow fast an animal or bird grows that can be expressed as daily live weight gain or average live weight gain.
  • h

  • HatcheryThe premises devoted to hatching eggs.
  • Health planA structured and proactive plan assessing the health status of birds or animals on a farm and giving information on steps to preempt, treat, eliminate or reduce any disease or disease risks.
  • Heavy MetalsToxic metals including lead, mercury, cadmium, and chromium. The metals iron, copper, zinc, aluminum, beryllium, cobalt, manganese and arsenic are also considered heavy metals by AGW.
  • HeiferA young female bovine animal that has not yet had a calf.
  • HenA female fowl.
  • Herbaceous matterLow growing non-woody perennial plants.
  • HerdA group of animals living together -particularly refers to cattle- that most likely have been put together for management purposes.
  • Herding canineA canine (dog) that by genetic predisposition and through proper training, possesses the skills to move animals effectively and humanely with minimal physical contact. (See also: Working dog)
  • High riskProducts that are genetically modified and grown on a large scale. High-risk products include crops that are commonly found in food products and animal feeds, either as the harvested crop or as a by-product.  
  • High welfare practicesPractices to ensure that animals can exhibit their natural behaviors; have suitable feed and water; are not subject to discomfort, pain, injury and disease and are not subject to fear and stress.
  • HoldingThe area of land or property owned or controlled by the applicant or certified person.
  • Hole punchingPunching a hole in the area between the toes of poultry for identification purposes. This practice is prohibited under AGW standards.
  • HomeopathyA system of healing by using incredibly dilute solutions of substances that in full strength would cause similar symptoms to the disease being treated.
  • Hot brandingA method of identifying an animal by burning a mark onto its hide with a hot iron.
  • Hot iron cauterizationRemoving the horn buds of cattle and goats using a hot iron, a tool that is heated then applied to the bud.
  • Hot prodHandheld object also known as 'electric prod' and 'hot shot' used to administer an electric shock when an animal is touched with it. This practice is prohibited under AGW standards.
  • HousingA building with a roof and four walls that can also be used as a shelter. (See also shelter.)
  • HumaneRaising animals with kindness, consideration, according to their needs, and without cruelty.
  • HusbandryThe care and management of the farm and its animals.
  • Hygienic working environmentA clean working environment. Basic Hygiene in the workplace can be boiled down to four different things: personal hygiene; work area cleanliness; clean restroom facilities; and a clean kitchen.
  • i

  • ImmunocastrationThe use of a vaccine which affects hormone development to delay the sexual development of male pigs. This practice is prohibited under Animal Welfare Approved standards.
  • Impacts to the ecosystemAltering the components or interconnected processes of the ecosystem.
  • Implanted hormonesArtificial hormones implanted under the skin of the animal that give a constant slow release. This practice is prohibited under Animal Welfare Approved standards.
  • IncubatorA specialized machine designed to hatch eggs by providing consistent specific temperature and humidity. Normally 2 machines or separate compartments: the Setter, used for the first 18 days with movement to replicate the mother hen exiting and returning to the nest and ensure equal embryo development, and the Hatcher, used for the last three days keeping the eggs still and supplying a higher humidity for hatching.
  • IndependentThe individual or entity owns and has management control of the animals.
  • Infrequent tillingA soil conservation system with the goal of minimum soil manipulation (not turning the soil over, as in ploughing) necessary for a successful crop production (Also see Minimum Tillage Practices).
  • InputGuidance or advice that may be considered but is not required.
  • InsensibleWithout feeling or consciousness. [also insentient]
  • InsentientWithout feeling or consciousness. [also insensible]
  • Instinctive behaviorSomething an animal or bird is motivated to do and does without being taught.
  • Integrated pest management(IPM) The careful consideration of all available pest control techniques and subsequent integration of appropriate measures that discourage the development of pest populations and keep pesticides and other interventions to levels that are economically justified and reduce or minimise risks to human health and the environment. IPM emphasises the growth of a healthy crop with the least possible disruption to agroecosystems and encourages natural pest control mechanisms.
  • Interdigital infectionsInfections that occur between the two cleats or parts of a cow or sheep's foot.
  • Interval feedingFeed regimes whereby double feed may be given on some days and no feed at all given on others. [also known as skip a day feeding]
  • Invasive speciesAn invasive species can be any kind of living organism—an amphibian (like the cane toad), plant, insect, fish, fungus, bacteria, or even an organism’s seeds or eggs—that is not native to an ecosystem and causes harm.
  • InversionTurning over, mixing, or otherwise plowing the soil. (See also Cultivation)
  • IonophoresA type of chemical compound used as an antibiotic or growth promoter.
  • Irreversible unconsciousnessA state of brain death from which the bird or animal cannot recover consciousness.
  • j

  • Johnes diseaseAn infectious wasting condition of cattle and other ruminants for which there is no treatment.
  • k

  • KidA young goat.
  • l

  • LambA young sheep, or the process of a ewe giving birth to lambs.
  • Laying hensBirds producing eggs.
  • Leg hold trapA trap with a mechanism that catches and holds an animal by its legs.
  • Lethal controlThe targeted killing of a specific wild animal.
  • Licensed hunterA hunter with the appropriate permits to carry a particular weapon and hunt a particular type of animal at a time of year when this is permitted.
  • LiquefactionDeliberately adding liquid to manure to enable liquid application. (Dairy solids and wash water may be stored in the same container.)
  • Liquid manure systemsWhere manure and urine are collected in pits or lagoons, often directly underneath the pens in which animals are living. The resulting liquid manure or slurry requires special handling and is usually treated by containment in lagoons before disposal by spraying or trickle application to grassland. This practice is prohibited under AGW standards.
  • Liquid pollutionPollution from liquid sources, such as, engine oil, gasoline, radiator fluids, or hydraulic fluids.
  • LitterBedding for livestock, or the reference to a group of animals born to a female at one time.
  • Live trapA device constructed to capture an animal by enclosing it.
  • Livestock guardian animalA domesticated animal, which by breed or temperament serves to protect livestock from wildlife, especially predators.
  • Livestock guardian dogA type of canine animal bred for the purpose of protecting livestock from predators. (See also: Working Dog)
  • Living wageA wage that is earned in a standard working week of up to 48 hours, which is sufficient to cover basic needs including food, shelter, education, transport, healthcare and a small amount of savings for contingencies for a family.
  • Loafing areaAn area distinct from the lying area within, where the animal has free movement and can interact with other animals. Note, this area may not be bedded but the lying area must be.
  • Local areaAreas within 150 miles of the holding.
  • Local communityA group of individuals that interact within their immediate surroundings. A typical local community consists of business operators, public agency staff and residents, and their interactions can include the sharing of resources, information and assistance, as well as the establishment of commercial relationships between local businesses and consumers.
  • Look out positionWhen a rabbit sits upright on its hind legs with its ears pricked.
  • Low riskProducts for which no genetically modified version is known and where there is no known risk of cross-contamination with other GMO crops.
  • Low VOC paintPaints that are low (fewer than 50 grams per liter) in volatile organic compounds.
  • LuxA measure of the intensity of light.
  • m

  • MaltreatmentSee abuse.
  • MangeA skin disease caused by blood-sucking mites.
  • MangerA trough for feed.
  • ManipulablePossible to move or arrange.
  • Marginalised groupsPersons outside the dominant social group, including people with disabilities, youth, women, lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender and intersex people, members of minority groups, indigenous people, internally displaced persons, and non-national, including refugees, asylum seekers and migrant workers.
  • MastitisInflammation of an animal’s udder due to bacterial infection.
  • Meat chickensSee broiler.
  • Milk replacersA substitute for fresh milk usually presented as a powder to be mixed with water for feeding animals that have not been weaned.
  • Minimum tillage practisesA soil conservation system with the goal of minimum soil manipulation (not turning the soil over, as in ploughing) necessary for a successful crop production. (Also see Infrequent Tilling)
  • MitigateMitigation is the process of addressing impacts to the environment caused by human action — and follows a hierarchy. First, negative environmental impacts should be avoided, for instance by re-siting the project to a more suitable location. If relocation is not feasible, science-strong measures should be deployed to minimise harms. Finally, if environmental impacts are inevitable, there should be appropriate compensation.
  • Moderate riskProducts where the only genetically modified versions are used solely in controlled/laboratory conditions and are not in commercial use and where there is a known risk of cross-contamination with other GMO crops.
  • MoultThe process of shedding feathers to renew plumage.
  • MorbidityThe percentage or proportion of a herd or flock that becomes affected by a particular disease.
  • MortalityThe percentage or proportion of a herd or flock that die.
  • MulesingRemoval of strips of skin on the hindquarters of a sheep.
  • MustA standard has to be adhered to as directed.
  • Mutually agreed termsUnder the Convention on Biological Diversity (CBD), the concept of Mutually Agreed Terms means that the access to genetic resources and the sharing of resulting benefits among the parties (the contracting country, as represented by its competent authority, and the party using the genetic resources) must be regulated by a contractual agreement. (Source: CBD Art. 15 (2), (4), and (7)).
  • n

  • Nagoya ProtocolA supplementary agreement to the Convention on Biological Diversity. It provides a Transparent legal framework for the effective implementation of one of the three objectives of the CBD: the fair and equitable sharing of benefits arising out of the utilisation of genetic resources. See: https://www.cbd.int/abs/about/default.shtml
  • Natural weaningAllowing a young animal to remain with the mother until nursing stops naturally.
  • Nest boxA secluded area where laying hens can go to produce eggs.
  • Non-compliantFailing to meet the applicable AGW standards.
  • Non-indigenousAnimals not originally found within the ecosystem of the United States and directly or indirectly spread by human activity.
  • Non-point pollutionPollution that comes from excess fertilizers, insecticides, herbicides or manure from agricultural land. Non-point pollution may wash or erode off the field or farm such that it pollutes other land or water sources.
  • Non-target plant speciesPlant species which are not intended to be wild harvested for use or sale.
  • Non-therapeuticAdministering treatment (antibiotics) when animals or birds are not sick or injured for the purpose of promoting growth or overcoming disease challenges that are inherent in the system of management. For example, cattle on feedlots may be given non-therapeutic treatments to try to prevent illness from liver damage due to the type of diet they are fed. This practice is prohibited under AGW standards.
  • Nose-flap deviceAn insert placed in the nostrils of a calf that stops it from suckling its mother. See also two- step weaning process.
  • Not ApprovedHas not met the requirements of the applicable AGW programme.
  • Not Known to ProgramA farm that has not applied to AGW.
  • NotchingCutting the ears of pigs, sheep or cattle to permanently identify them.
  • o

  • Old-growthOld-Growth trees are part of a forest that has attained great age without significant disturbance and thereby exhibits unique ecological features and might be classified as a climax community. Old-Growth features include diverse tree-related structures that provide diverse wildlife habitat that increases the biodiversity of the forested ecosystems. The specific age definition attained of old-growth trees can vary depending on the type of tree and location, but it is usually 120 years and up (Also see primary forest).
  • Operational SeparationThe AWA and non-AWA unit must function as a separate unit. Livestock must be identifiable on an individual basis. Equipment for forage production and moving livestock can be shared. Separation of feeds must be clearly demonstrated. Staff working on the AWA unit must be able to demonstrate an understanding of the requirements of these standards. Training records must be kept for the audit.
  • Organic matterSoil organic matter is the fraction of the soil that consists of plant or animal tissue in various stages of breakdown (decomposition). Most of our productive agricultural soils have between 3 and 6% organic matter. Adapted from: http://franklin.cce.cornell.edu/resources/soil-organic-matter-fact-sheet
  • OrganophosphatesA group of synthetic chemicals mainly used as insecticides that has a detrimental impact on the nervous system.
  • Ottawa crateA type of farrowing crate that uses sloping bars to limit the area where the sow can lie, but that does give her the ability to turn round. The use of crates is prohibited under AGW standards.
  • Over-sized litterWhen the number of piglets is larger than the mother can care for.
  • p

  • PaddockA fenced/delineated unit of pasture as defined by the farmer.
  • Particulate matter(PM) A mixture of solid particles and liquid droplets found in the air. Some particles, such as dust, dirt, soot, or smoke, are large or dark enough to be seen with the naked eye. Others are so small they can only be detected using an electron microscope. Particle pollution includes:   PM10 : inhalable particles, with diameters that are generally 10 micrometers and smaller; and   PM2.5 : fine inhalable particles, with diameters that are generally 2.5 micrometers and smaller.
  • PastureLand covered with vegetation suitable for grazing or foraging by farm animals. (Also see range.)
  • Pasture-rotationMethod of maintaining vegetative growth and animal health by planned movement of animals from one area to another.
  • Peat harvestingPeat, fuel consisting of spongy material formed by the partial decomposition of organic matter, primarily plant material, in wetlands such as swamps, muskegs, bogs, fens, and moors. Given that peat harvesting is destructive to wetland habitats, its use for commercial trade is discouraged.
  • PerchSupport consisting of a branch or rod that serves as a resting place for birds.
  • Permanent pasturePermanent grassland and permanent pasture (together referred to as “permanent grassland”) means land used to grow grasses or other herbaceous forage naturally (self-seeded) or through cultivation (sown) and that has not been included in the crop rotation of the holding for five years or more; it may include other species which can be grazed provided that the grasses and other herbaceous forage remain predominant.
  • Personal Protection Equipment (PPE)Personal protective equipment, commonly referred to as "PPE", is equipment worn to minimize exposure to hazards that cause serious workplace injuries and illnesses. These injuries and illnesses may result from contact with chemical, radiological, physical, electrical, mechanical, or other workplace hazards. Personal protective equipment may include items such as gloves, safety glasses and shoes, earplugs or muffs, hard hats, respirators, or coveralls, vests and full body suits. Adapted from: https://www.osha.gov/SLTC/personalprotectiveequipment/
  • PesticidesCategories of toxic chemicals including herbicides, fungides, insecticides and rodenticides.
  • Physical SeparationThe facility used for AWA animals must be distinct and separate from the non-AWA animals. There must not be a mosaic of pens, buildings and land used for AWA and non-AWA livestock. Separation must be clear and distinct.
  • Physiological well-being:A state whereby the animal is kept not just with an absence of disease but in a state of positive health with the ability to express natural behaviors.
  • PigletYoung pig.
  • PinioningThe act of surgically removing the joint of a bird's wing farthest from the body to prevent flight. This practice is prohibited under AGW standards.
  • PlannedSomething is planned when there is an intention to carry out an action, and a decision about what steps will be taken to achieve this.
  • Plant Protection ProductsSubstances, including pesticides, that protect crops or desirable or useful plants. They are primarily used in the agricultural sector but also in forestry, horticulture, amenity areas and in-home gardens. They contain at least one active substance and have one of the following functions: Protect plants or plant products against pests/diseases, before or after harvest; Influence the life processes of plants (such as substances influencing their growth, excluding nutrients); Preserve plant products; Destroy or prevent growth of undesired plants or parts of plants. They may also contain other components including safeners and synergists.  
  • PoachingTaking and/or killing livestock without consent.
  • Polled breedsNaturally horn-free breed.
  • Pooled productMingling of products or animals of individual producers into a single lot.
  • Potable drinking waterPotable water is water of a quality suitable for drinking, cooking and personal bathing.
  • PoultA young turkey.
  • PredatorAn animal that hunts, kills, and eats other animals in order to survive.
  • Predator controlThe act of removing, excluding or euthanizing wildlife that are or could be in conflict with farm or ranch livestock.
  • Prescribed burningPrescribed burning is the process of planning and applying fire to a predetermined area, under specific environmental conditions, to achieve a desired outcome.
  • Primary forestA forest that has never been logged (Also see Old Growth).
  • Prior informed consentFree, Prior and Informed Consent (FPIC) is a specific right that pertains to indigenous peoples and is recognised in the United Nations Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples (UNDRIP). It allows them to give or withhold consent to a project that may affect them or their territories. Once they have given their consent, they can withdraw it at any stage. Furthermore, FPIC enables them to negotiate the conditions under which the project will be designed, implemented, monitored and evaluated.  This is also embedded within the universal right to self-determination.
  • ProcessingTransforming raw ingredients into food.
  • ProducerThe individual or entity that owns the animals and products thereof.
  • Producer groupIndividual producers who agree to cooperatively pool their products.
  • Prohibited inputProhibited inputs are defined as products not permitted for use in Certified Regenerative farming.
  • Properly compostedWaste material to be composted must be mixed with other material as needed to achieve a suitable carbon and nitrogen balance. Temperature in the compost heap should reach at least 131 degrees F (550C) and be maintained throughout the pile for at least three consecutive days. Compost windrows are turned as required to facilitate the breakdown of composted products. Waste is properly composted when it is totally degraded and compost has a consistent texture and appearance.
  • PulletsYoung female chickens being raised as laying hens.
  • q

  • Qualified expertA person who has a comprehensive and authoritative knowledge of the subject for which their expertise is sought. Qualified experts must not be suspended from or have been subject to any disciplinary action from any relevant professional body.
  • r

  • RamAn un-castrated male sheep.
  • RangeLand covered with vegetation suitable for grazing or foraging by farm animals. (See also pasture.)
  • RecommendedThe standard should be adhered to, however variations will be accepted as long as the goal of animal welfare is not jeopardized.
  • Regenerative agricultureA set of planned agricultural practices that ensure the holding is not depleted by agriculture practices, and over time the soil, water, air and biodiversity are improved or maintained to the greatest extent possible.
  • Regenerative planA roadmap designed by the farmer with or without help from subject matter experts outlining the actions and activities the farmer will undertake to manage and maintain the holding in accordance with CR Principles. Areas covered in the Regenerative Plan include: (nine principles) and plans, maps, baseline measurements, risk assessments and all information necessary to document adherence to the plan.
  • Regular workerAn employee who is hired into a position with a predetermined duration of six months or greater and is budgeted for at least 40 hours per pay period.
  • Remote auditAn audit carried out using technology that would replace the need for a trained individual to attend the location. (See also: Audit, Desktop Audit)
  • RequiredA standard has to be adhered to as directed.
  • Rescue animalsAnimals taken onto farms when they have either suffered harm or would be at risk of harm if not re-homed. Cull animals from other farms are not rescue animals.
  • Responsible lending/borrowingLending and borrowing practices that require reasonable inquiries and responsible steps to verify information to make assessments about whether a contract will be suitable. In making such an assessment, it is essential that the consumer must have the capacity to repay the loan without experiencing substantial hardship.
  • ReviewAn assessment of current practice against a set of guidelines with the intent of instituting change where necessary.
  • RoosterMale chicken.
  • RoostingBirds who are perching or resting.
  • Rotational grazingSee pasture rotation.
  • RumenThe first of four stomachs of a ruminant, such as a cow or a sheep.
  • RunoffThe quantity of water discharged in surface streams. Runoff includes not only the waters that travel over the land surface and through channels to reach a stream but also interflow, the water that infiltrates the soil surface and travels by means of gravity toward a stream channel (always above the main groundwater level) and eventually empties into the channel. Runoff also includes groundwater that is discharged into a stream; streamflow that is composed entirely of groundwater is termed base flow, or fair-weather runoff, and it occurs where a stream channel intersects the water table.
  • s

  • Safe working environmentDescribes policies and procedures in place to ensure the safety and health of employees within a workplace. Involves hazard identification and control according to government standards and ongoing safety training and education for employees.
  • ScopeThe addition or subtraction of the number of species on a farm that are approved by AGW.
  • Septum nose ringA ring that is inserted into the cartilage that separates the nostrils.
  • Sequential individual feedingA feeding system where only one animal can eat at a time.
  • Sewage sludgeSewage sludge refers to the solids separated during the treatment of municipal wastewater. The definition includes domestic septage.
  • ShacklingRestraining live poultry at the slaughterhouse by suspending them upside down by their legs from metal hangers.
  • ShearingThe removal of fleece from a sheep.
  • ShelterSomething that gives animals protection either via natural features such as trees or artificial structures like buildings or shades, however, it will not necessarily provide the same level of protection as housing.
  • ShouldThe standard should be adhered to, however variations will be accepted as long as the goal of animal welfare is not jeopardized.
  • ShowingTemporary removal of animals from the approved farm for the purposes of competition, demonstration or education.
  • ShowsTemporary removal of animals from the approved farm for the purposes of competition, demonstration or education.
  • SitesPoints or areas on the holding.
  • Skip a day feedingSee interval feeding.
  • Slash and burn farming/agricultureA method of cultivation in which forests are burned and cleared for planting.  The ash provides some fertilisation, and the plot is relatively free of weeds. After several years of cultivation, fertility declines and weeds increase. Slash-and-burn agriculture is often used by tropical-forest root-crop farmers in various parts of the world and by dry-rice cultivators of the forested hill country of Southeast Asia. Adapted from: https://www.britannica.com/topic/slash-and-burn-agriculture
  • Slatted flooringFlooring that has gaps or spaces in it to allow manure and other material to pass through.
  • SlaughterCausing the death of animals.
  • SnareA trap for catching birds or animals comprised of a noose of wire, cord or other material.
  • Social hierarchyWhere each individual in a group has a rank, for example the pecking order in chickens where less dominant birds will defer to those higher up in rank.
  • Soil compactionThe reduction of soil volume due to external factors; this reduction lowers soil productivity and environmental quality.
  • Soil sterilisationA chemical or physical process that results in the death of soil organisms. This control method affects many organisms, even though the elimination of only specific weeds, fungi, bacteria, viruses, nematodes, or pests is desirable.
  • Soil structureSoil structure is the arrangement of pores and fissures (porosity) within a matrix of solid materials (soil particles and organic matter). The solid materials bond and aggregate to give the pores and fissures. The quantity, distribution and arrangement of pores determines water holding capacity, infiltration, permeability, root penetration, and, respiration. Adapted from THE ROLE OF SOIL ORGANISMS ON SOIL STABILITY; (A REVIEW). INTERNATIONAL JOURNAL OF CURRENT LIFE SCIENCES. 4. 10328-. Hesammi, Einallah & Farshidi, Ali & Sadatebrahimi, Farhan & Talebi, Ali. (2014).
  • SolarisationSolarisation is a hydrothermal process for disinfestation of soil. It is currently accomplished by incubating soil under Transparent or black plastic film (primarily polyethylene or polyvinyl chloride=PVC) during hot months with minimal cloud cover, thus producing a "greenhouse effect" which raises soil temperature to levels which are lethal or injurious to many plant pathogens and pests.
  • Source farmA source farm is approved to raise and sell animals to other AGW farms.
  • SowAn adult female pig that has produced at least one litter.
  • SpayingThe process of removing the ovaries of a female animal to prevent her from breeding. This practice is prohibited under AGW standards.
  • Species-rich permanent pastureSpecies-rich grasslands are usually unimproved grasslands that have not been ploughed, fertilised or re-sown in recent years. They provide a habitat for a great variety of small herbs and grasses that cannot thrive in improved swards, as well as for invertebrates, birds and small mammals. Species-rich grasslands have declined dramatically since the second world war and now survive as small and isolated remnants of a habitat that was once widespread.
  • Split(production system) A farming system that promotes some of its same species animal products under a certified system/label or by its own claims, while raising the remainder of its same species animals using non-certified practices. (See also dual production system.)
  • Squeeze ChuteA narrow cage for the temporary restraint of an animal for the purposes of checking identification, carrying out treatment, etc., while keeping the animal still and the farm workers safe.
  • Statutory environmentThose measures controlled, decided or required by law.
  • StewardA person whose job it is to take care of a holding.
  • StockAnimals kept for commercial purposes on farm.
  • StockyardAn enclosure for the keeping of livestock, sometimes associated with the sale of animals and slaughter.
  • Store animalAnimals being raised for meat that have been weaned but are not yet in the fattening period. (See also feeder.)
  • StressA physical and mental state of strain or suspense that can impact an animal”s overall health, behavior and quality of the food product, stress is known to act as an immunosuppressant.
  • StunThe action of rendering animals insensible and unconscious prior to slaughter.
  • Subcutaneous Radio Frequency IdentificationImplantation under the skin of an animal with a microchip that contains details of the individual animal. The information on the microchip can be accessed by a hand held reader without having to necessarily catch and restrain the animal.
  • SubsidiaryA site where AGW animals are managed other than the main address listed for the farm whether owned or rented.  
  • Sulpha drugsA group of antibiotics that all contain sulpha.
  • Supernumerary teatsTeats that are additional to the usual number of teats found on a cow (4), sheep (2) or goat (2). Can sometimes produce milk but more often are not fully formed and can obstruct milking.
  • SustainableAWA believes that “sustainable,” when used in terms of food and agriculture, refers to food production and distribution systems which work in harmony with the natural environment and make the most efficient use of limited natural resources; which ensure high animal welfare standards; which provide a fair and secure income for farming families and workers; and which provide high quality, nutritious and reasonably priced goods to consumers. Truly sustainable production systems satisfy the food needs of the present without compromising the ability of future generations to meet their own needs. Note: When used as a food label the term is currently unregulated and undefined, so it is important to seek the specific definition from the person and/or company making the claim.
  • Synthetic Fertilizer(Adopted from 7 CFR 205.2)  A substance that is formulated or manufactured by a chemical process or by a process that chemically changes a substance extracted from naturally occurring plant, animal, or mineral sources, except that such term shall not apply to substances created by naturally occurring biological processes.
  • t

  • Tail dockingThe removal of all or part of the tail. This practice is prohibited under AGW standards, however sheep farmers who meet all other AGW standards may apply for a derogation to this standard while they work towards the goal of no tail docking.
  • Target speciesTarget species are species specifically chosen for wild-harvesting and/or monitoring.
  • Temporary workerAn employment situation where an employee is expected to remain in position only for a certain period of time.
  • Tether/tetheringTo tie or tie up an animal using a rope, chain or similar restraint.
  • Therapeutic levelsTargeted antibiotics used to cure sick animals.
  • Thermal stressStress experienced when an animal is kept at temperatures higher or lower than it can comfortably tolerate.
  • Threatened speciesA species likely, in the near future, to become an endangered species within all or much of its range.
  • ThriveA state whereby the bird or animal is able to prosper in terms of physiological well-being.
  • Tie stallAn area where an animal is restrained for varying lengths of time.
  • TimelyThe appropriate length of time required to decide or act upon a given situation depending on the occasion.
  • Tipped hornsRemoval of the very end of the horns of cattle and sheep, without cutting into the blood vessels or quick.
  • Topsoil removalThere is no legal definition of the word topsoil, but it is generally the top layer of native soil where most plant growth occurs.
  • Traditional knowledgeTraditional knowledge refers to the knowledge, innovations and practices of indigenous and local communities around the world. Developed from experience gained over the centuries and adapted to the local culture and environment, traditional knowledge is transmitted orally from generation to generation. It tends to be collectively owned and takes the form of stories, songs, folklore, proverbs, cultural values, beliefs, rituals, community laws, local language, and agricultural practices, including the development of plant species and animal breeds. Sometimes it is referred to as an oral traditional for it is practiced, sung, danced, painted, carved, chanted and performed down through millennia. traditional knowledge is mainly of a practical nature, particularly in such fields as agriculture, fisheries, health, horticulture, forestry and environmental management in general.
  • Traditional use rightsThe right to use biodiversity for indigenous and cultural practices.
  • Transparent mannerBeing open and informative about key points of information.
  • Two step weaningA process for weaning calves in two stages where the first step keeps the calves with their mothers but stops them from suckling – although they can still graze and drink water – by fitting them with a nose flap and as a second step, calves are separated from their mothers and the nose flaps taken out.
  • v

  • VaccineA preparation given to an animal so that the animal produces antibodies in sufficient number to protect itself should it be exposed to that particular disease.
  • Vertical integrationThe process in which several steps in the production and/or distribution of the animal production chain is controlled by a single company.
  • Video AuctionA sale where cattle are sold from farm to farm, with the buyer “viewing” the animals via a video recording. Cattle could not be taken to a sale barn either before or after the sale. They must be shipped direct from the seller's farm to the purchaser's farm.
  • w

  • Waste-stream biofuelsWaste biomass, such as from food waste, can be used to produce fuels (such as biofuels). These biofuels can be used to generate energy can decrease waste management problems, pollution, greenhouse gaseous emissions and the use of fossil fuels. There is a huge potential for bioenergy obtained from waste to decrease the speed of global warming.
  • Water qualityWater quality refers to the physical, chemical and biological characteristics of both water and sediment. Our understanding of how these water quality parameters behave is integral to our management of their effects.
  • Water tableThe water table is the boundary between the unsaturated zone and the saturated zone underground. Below the water table, groundwater fills any spaces between sediments and within rock.
  • WatercourseThe channel that a flowing body of water follows.
  • Wattle trimmingThe trimming of the fleshy skin beneath the throat of some birds. This practice is prohibited under AGW standards.
  • WeaningThe removal of young mammals from milk and/or transition from milk to a solid food as a source of nutrition.
  • Well waterA water well is an excavation or structure created in the ground by digging, driving, boring, or drilling to access groundwater in underground aquifers.
  • Wild animalAn animal that is living in nature without human control or care: not tame.
  • Wild harvestingThe harvesting of wild plants to consume, sell or make into saleable products.
  • Woody debrisThe remains of something broken down or destroyed, such as branches and leaves of a tree. (See also: Fallen Debris)
  • Worker disciplineDiscipline is the regulation and modulation of human activities to produce a controlled performance.
  • Worker discriminationDiscrimination happens when a person, or a group of people, is treated less favourably than another person or group because of their background or certain personal characteristics. It is also Discrimination when an unreasonable rule or policy applies to everyone but has the effect of disadvantaging some people because of a personal characteristic they share. Adapted from: https://www.humanrights.gov.au/quick-guide/12030
  • Working dogA type of canine animal bred and trained for various farm tasks, including herding. (See also: Herding Canine; Livestock Guardian Dog.)
  • Working groupCollaboration of stakeholders (i.e. farmers, consumers, etc) that works to research, advise on standards, and decide on actions to solve a problem or resolve an issue.
  • Working zonesThe soil zones affected by agricultural disturbance.
  • WormsInternal parasites.
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