Assurance Schemes are voluntary schemes which establish production standards covering food safety, animal welfare and environmental protection.
The Red Tractor scheme and the Quality Standard Mark (QSM) scheme for beef and lamb both provide a guarantee of assurance, with the Beef and Lamb QSM embracing additional eating quality requirements. The two schemes sit side-by-side as perfect partners, offering consumers and retailers choice.
The schemes are distinguished by individual brand logos, which also indicate the origin of the product through the use of a flag. (eg British origin, with the Union flag)
Product of any EU member state can carry the appropriate scheme logo if it meets the scheme standards. So if the logo carries the French flag you know the product has come from France, and so on for other countries. Food which has been produced and / or processed in more than one Member State will use the flag of the EU.
LEAF Marque is a global assurance system that recognises sustainable food production, demonstrates continuous improvement, measures performance and assures consumers that their food has been produced to high standards of environmental care.
LEAF Marque certification is underpinned by Integrated Farm Management which is a site-specific, whole farm approach to farming and covers nine principles including: Organisation and Planning, Soil Management and Fertility, Crop Health and Protection, Pollution Control and By-Product Management, Animal Husbandry, Energy Efficiency, Water Management, Landscape and Nature Conservation and Community Engagement. The LEAF Marque Standard is also organised into these nine different sections, which businesses are independently inspected against in order to achieve certification.
The impact of LEAF Marque is outlined in the annual Global Impacts Report which shows the achievements of LEAF Marque farmers around the world and their positive impacts on sustainable farming. LEAF Marque is also recognised by brands and retailers across the UK in order to demonstrate to consumers that they are sourcing sustainably produced food.
Safe Haven Standards
The Safe Haven Certification Scheme reduces the risk of outbreaks of bacterial diseases – including ring rot, brown rot and Dickeya – through seed potato growing and handling standards.
Sixty per cent of British seed potatoes are covered by the scheme and members are audited each year to make sure they are complying with the standards.
The ‘ring fence’ that the scheme provides ensures all seed is grown from Safe Haven sourced seed or disease-free nuclear stock which protects against pests and diseases not generally found in Britain.