To attain the Hormone Free achievement, farms must have not used any growth hormones on any of their farm animals.
Growth Hormones or Hormonal Growth Promotants (HGP’s) are naturally occurring hormones like oestrogen, progesterone and testosterone or their synthetic versions which help with the growth of the animal. All HGP’s must be tested and approved for human consumption and are regulated by the Australian Pesticides and Veterinary Medicines Authority.
Farmers use HGP’s to improve the efficiency by which cattle convert stock feed into meat, allowing cattle to be processed earlier with less stock feed consumed. A report by Meat Livestock Australia into HGP’s found that eating quality will be reduced and may affect the grade of the meat as well as reducing the marbling. Also, these growth hormones do not undergo a test on the effects on the animal’s behaviour which is important to understand the impacts on animal welfare. Farmers continue to use animal growth hormones to help feed our growing population.
By AgWe farmers promoting their farm as Hormone Free, customers can support each farm for their quality of meat and focus on animal welfare.