Grass has been asked if we have received any response directly from Woolworths. Please see below in answer to this query…
Grass received an email on the 18 September, 2014, from the Woolworths Corporate Communications Manager who made it very clear that all Woolworths communication with Grass would be via the Woolworths website and social media only. To date, Woolworths have not addressed any of the concerns that Grass raised in their Dairy Commitment list. This list was sent to Woolworths after engaging with them over the 20 month period that Woolworths have referred to in their statements. On the 22 April, 2014, a senior Woolworths dairy team member acknowledged receipt of our Dairy Commitment List and promised a response.
View original response here on the Woolworths website
“We will review the list and formally respond, ” a senior member of the Woolworths dairy team emailed to Grass on 22 April 2014.
WOOLWORTHS RESPONDS TO GRASS CONSUMER GROUP
Our Woolworths dairy team has engaged with Grass Consumer Group (Grass) for well over 20 months on concerns regarding our dairy farming practices. We have made a lot of information available in various meetings and via email. We have also issued a statement and produced a video explaining our dairy farming practices to our customers.
We stand by the statement and video that outlines our position very clearly and we’re reluctant to engage in further ongoing discussion.
We remain concerned, however, about the confusion Grass has created among customers and would like to correct their inaccuracies:
1. Woolworths has not misled customers. We have changed labels due to feedback, legislative amendments and changes in our supply base.
2. We try hard to conduct business in an open and transparent manner, and the many months of engagement with yourselves is evidence of that.
3. We currently have four organic milk suppliers, two in the Western Cape, one in the Free State and one in Gauteng. At the moment, all the cows on our organic milk suppliers’ farms are reared on pasture only. If the pasture is not nutritionally sufficient, organic grains may be added to the cow’s diet.
4. In most instances we exceed minimum standards to meet our strict quality standards. We subscribe to EU standards if there are no agreed local standards. These practices are independently audited by accredited organisations.
5. Homsek processes organic milk for Woolworths but they are not one of our organic milk farmers.
Woolworths will continue to work with, and learn from, organisations such as Compassion in World Farming (CIWF) and WWF to approach dairy farming scientifically and benchmarked against the best international practices. We will continue to do the best we can to protect the welfare of cows and other farm animals.
You can view all the links to the Grass responses here