The impact of broiler production system practices on consumer perceptions of animal welfare

J. de Jonge, J.C.M. van Trijp

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleAcademicpeer-review

47 Citations (Scopus)


This research explores the extent to which different farm management practices influence the perceived animal friendliness of broiler production systems, and how this differs between individuals. Using a conjoint design with paired comparisons, respondents evaluated broiler production systems that were described on the basis of 7 animal welfare-related practices. It was found that practices in the area of outdoor access, stocking density, and day-night rhythm were overall perceived to have a larger impact on perceptions of animal friendliness than other practices, such as transport duration or the type of breed used. However, individuals differed regarding the extent to which they believed the different farm management practices influenced the animal friendliness of the production system. Differences between individuals regarding their knowledge about and familiarity with livestock farming, degree of anthropomorphism, and their moral beliefs regarding animal welfare partly explained the relative importance individuals attached to farm management practices. The obtained insight into which welfare-related farm management practices, in consumers’ minds, most strongly contribute to animal welfare, and the existence of differences between consumers, can be helpful in the development of animal welfare-based certification schemes that are appealing to consumers, as well as the positioning of welfare concepts in the market. Key words: broiler production system , animal welfare , consumer perception, conjoint analysis , individual difference
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)3080-3095
JournalPoultry Science
Issue number12
Publication statusPublished - 2013


  • growing pigs
  • preferences
  • chickens
  • poultry
  • meat
  • food
  • values
  • orientations
  • information
  • attitudes

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