Ducks - how can you help?
Choose higher welfare
Unfortunately, meat from ducks reared to our welfare standards, or equivalent, that require them to have full body access to water is not currently available in supermarkets. The UK duck industry has chosen to no longer farm their ducks to such standards.
There is no duck meat currently available in the UK that can be considered acceptable on welfare grounds.
Organic legislation states that for ducks to be labelled organic they must have access to a stream, pond or lake. But, this only applies whenever the weather conditions permit, and there are no rules relating to how deep or wide the water must be.
There is no requirement to provide open water to the ducks when they are indoors where they can spend two thirds of their lives before being given access to the outdoors. However, some organic schemes may have standards that go beyond the legislation in these areas.
There are no legal requirements to provide free-range ducks with access to open water.
The Red Tractor standards seek to provide a common standard across the industry. In some important areas that affect duck welfare, their standards go beyond legal requirements. However they only require ducks to be provided with head access to water. We believe this is not sufficient to adequately cater for the behavioural needs of ducks.
Ask your retailer
If you see duck meat for sale, please ask whether the duck meat has come from ducks that have had full body access to water and not just access to bathing water: the term bathing water can be used to describe ducks that have just had enough water to cover their head only.
Join our campaigns
Please support our campaigns to improve the welfare of as many farm animals as possible, at every stage of their lives.
Find out what we are doing to improve the welfare of farmed meat ducks.