Benchmark Methodology

BBFAW Methodology

The Business Benchmark on Farm Animal Welfare is designed to help drive higher farm animal welfare standards in the world’s leading food businesses

The Benchmark assesses company management of and performance on farm animal welfare in four core areas:

  • Management Commitment and Policy, including overarching farm animal welfare policies as well as specific policies on issues such as close confinement and long-distance transportation;
  • Governance and Management, including management oversight, farm animal welfare-related objectives and targets, supply chain management and performance reporting;
  • Leadership and Innovation, including research and development and customer and client engagement; 
  • Performance Measurement, including quantitative indicators linked to key management inputs as well as welfare outcome measures.

The Benchmark now covers 150 companies in 23 countries, spread across three food industry subsectors: food retailers and wholesalers, restaurants and bars, and food producers. BBFAW assesses company operations involved in animal protein for human consumption. The Benchmark excludes by-products of the human food supply chain, such as pet food, animal skins, fur, leather and down.

BBFAW publishes an annual Benchmark report which includes a Methodology. The Methodology describes the Benchmark framework, how companies are selected, and how each question is assessed and interpreted. BBFAW also publishes a list of companies covered by the Benchmark and a Glossary. Some of the key features of the Benchmark process are:

  • Companies are assessed on the basis of their published information only.
  • The initial assessments are reviewed by members of Compassion in World Farming’s Food Business team and FOUR PAWS' Corporate Engagement team to check the factual accuracy of the content and to ensure consistency.
  • Preliminary assessment reports containing interim findings and scores are emailed to companies and companies are invited to respond with written comments or to request further dialogue on the assessment approach and scoring.
  • The final confidential company reports, showing individual scores and comments for each question, as well as overall company scores and comparable sector scores, are sent to companies at the time of the BBFAW Benchmark Report launch.