Pig Production in Premium Standard Farms of Princeton
Ethical standards at Premium Standard Farms of Princeton have long been questioned when pig production was converted into a standardized process that only focused on the product. Breeding at the farm is done by artificial insemination, and impregnated sows have to wait in small metal stalls until they give birth. Just after two weeks, the sows are returned to the breeding rooms and the process is repeated for the next three years until the sows are slaughtered. Animal welfare advocates have not supported these practices as it is not healthy for the animal, and this is in fact animal cruelty. Premium Standard argued that the animals at their facilities are comfortable and that only one percent of them die for they are slaughtered.
This method ensures mass production of pork products and therefore reduces the cost of pork products in the market. Increase in the production of pork products will bring about an increase in sales and revenues which then will maximize the company’s profits. Mass production ensures the company’s success in the market as it is one of the largest pork producers in the country.
Despite the business success mass pork production brings to the table, animal welfare should not be compromised in the process, and therefore Premium Standard needs to adopt a professional code of ethics. The Ethical Principles for the U.S Pork Producers was approved in March 2008, which was established to ensure that pork producers maintain certain ethical standards and principles. This has been done to build the trust and confidence of their customers and the community as a whole to ensure use of safe practices. It concentrates on food safety, animal well-being, environment, public health and the community as a whole. Substandard procedures should not be accepted in the name of business.
Slotting is a business term used to cover various fees of grocery retailers to command manufacturers who want a place on their shelves in the supermarkets, which began in the late 1970s. The success of grocery retailers in collecting slotting fees from both big and small manufacturers illustrates the power they have in the market place gaining profits from both the manufacturer and the consumer when they purchase the product form the shelf. This fee also includes promotion of the manufacturer’s products and discounts from the manufacturer’s products to the grocer’s.
Studies have shown that manufacturer’s costs have increased through spending up to 13 percent of their revenues in slotting fees. Small companies and companies with new products in the market are at a disadvantage as they could be squeezed out of the market place as they could be lacking the necessary resources needed for the slotting fees leading to failure. It can also be disadvantageous to local businesses as customers may not be able to find some of the special local brands in the supermarket. From this point of view, one has to question the ethics in payment of slotting fees.
There is an assumption that slotting fees act as a barrier to the small businesses that are not able to afford the fees. However, a small producer is highly unlikely to have both the quality and quantity of the product to manage to meet the needs of a large market. In the light of this thought, one can even argue that providing a means to get a product in supermarkets and stores can in fact help small-scale producers through payment of a certain fee. Through this, the small producer can be able to keep his product in the stores long enough just to get a foothold into the market.