The Pasture-Fed Livestock Association (PFLA) champions the virtues of Pasture for Life farming, providing a distinct and legal identity for systems where animals eat only grass and forage crops their entire life. Food produced this way is more sustainable and is much healthier for humans to eat than meat from animals fed grain.
This way of farming is also environmentally friendly – flower-rich meadows are filled with insects, birds and mammals, soils are rejuvenated and it has a low carbon footprint. Evidence shows it is kinder on the animals as they are less stressed, live longer and are more fertile. In most cases it generates fairer financial returns for farmers that produce high quality, certified 100% grass-fed meat.
Certified meat is also fully traceable – shoppers can find out which farm, and even which particular animal it has come from, simply by scanning a QR code on the pack with their smart phone.
Two thirds of UK farmland is covered in grass. In many places it grows where other crops for human consumption would not survive. Cattle and sheep have complex stomachs that have the unique ability to turn the fibre inside grass and other plants, into products that are useful such as meat, milk and wool. Through their grazing, animals also manage the countryside in a more natural way than men and machines. By buying Pasture for Life produce, consumers can support this method of farming.
The PFLA is a farmer-led community interest company with a growing membership of Pasture for Life certified farmers and butchers, and many hundreds of supporters. Members can access a lively Internet forum and a recently published booklet examining the farm business case for feeding ruminants just on pasture. A series of Pasture for Life Beef and Lamb tastings are also taking place in London.