What is AAWS?

At Avianza we have promoted AAWS (Avianza Animal Welfare Spain) as a guarantee mark for the Commitment to Animal Welfare of Spanish producers. An initiative framed in the common seal «B+ ANIMAL WELFARE COMMITMENT», which includes in a unified image all the meats and products certified by the different systems implemented in a coordinated manner by each sector (see news).

In this way, consumers will be able to recognize poultry meat products that represent the highest degree of compliance by operators with the requirements established by our interprofessional body in terms of animal welfare and traceability. 

Without a doubt, a certification process that guarantees citizens that they consume quality products under the values in which we believe and work, with the highest level of animal welfare. 

How is it achieved?

The AVIANZA Animal Welfare certification is necessary to obtain the “Avianza Animal Welfare Spain” (AAWS) certification, specific to the poultry meat sector, and to authorize the use of the “Animal Welfare Commitment” Mark.

In order to identify in the market products that meet the most demanding requirements in the world in animal welfare and traceability, the “Animal Welfare Commitment” B+ Mark is a project that arises from the Agri-Food Interprofessional Organizations of the Spanish livestock-meat sector and which brings together interprofessionals from each of the sectors represented.

The common seal «B+ ANIMAL WELFARE COMMITMENT» strictly guarantees the products of operators that have been certified through the Technical Procedures and Regulations of the respective "Animal Welfare Commitment" certification schemes, developed by the six Interprofessionals based on the criteria and elements established by ENAC (the National Accreditation Entity), to obtain its accreditable certification recognition.

«B+ ANIMAL WELFARE COMMITMENT» and the respective certification schemes that support it are in a continuous process of verification and improvement, with the objective of recognition and accreditation by ENAC.

Operators certified under this Reference may use the “Animal Welfare Commitment” B+ Mark to indicate such condition, once authorization for its use has been granted by the B+ Brand Management Commission. 


The AVIANZA Animal Welfare Reference for fattening birds aims to lay the foundations for high standards of animal welfare in the production of meat birds. 

The objective pursued with the certification of the AVIANZA Animal Welfare Reference is to evaluate the animal welfare of poultry farms and processing centers in a standardized and objective manner. 

In addition to ensuring compliance with community legal regulations on animal welfare, it raises standards above the legal minimum as it expands the fields of action and control relating to the five freedoms of animal welfare. 

In chicken farms, aspects that affect feeding, behavior, management and management by staff and their relationship with the birds, facilities and health are evaluated. 

In processing centers, aspects related to the effect of handling by personnel, transportation and related operations, housing and stunning operations (either electrical or controlled atmosphere), slaughter and bleeding, and possible injuries are evaluated. during these practices. The evaluation is carried out through audits in which direct and indirect conditions that may affect poultry are verified. 

Therefore, certification under the AVIANZA Animal Welfare Reference will provide companies with added value with the following characteristics: 

  • Demonstrate your responsibility and awareness with forms of production that respect animals. 
  • Evidence compliance with the legal requirements in relation to animal welfare and this reference. 
  • Increase the confidence of your current consumers and the demands of potential consumers.
  • Improve good animal management practices and, therefore, contribute to greater efficiency in animal production and higher quality of products. 
  • Work with accredited certification bodies and qualified auditors. 
  • Allow the evaluation of suppliers based on a standard. 
  • Ensure greater ease of comparison and transparency. 

The regulation develops the bases and tools necessary to verify animal welfare in poultry production, both in chicken farms and in slaughter, cutting and processing centers, which will give rise to opting for the concession for of the AVIANZA Animal Welfare certificate (“Avianza Animal WelfareSpain” (AAWS)).

5 principles, 5 freedoms

In order to have common animal welfare standards for all farmers and processing centers in the field of poultry, it is necessary to establish clear and scientifically based guidelines that evaluate the animal welfare of poultry. independent and objective, a reason that justifies the creation of the AVIANZA Animal Welfare Reference.

Thus, according to Terrestrial Animal Health Code of the World Organization for Animal Health (OMSA,WOAH for its acronym in English: Word Organization for Animal Health) animal welfare “designates the physical and mental state of an animal in relation to the conditions in which it lives and dies.” The WHOA principles on animals reflect the European Convention for the Protection of Animals on Livestock Farms, and encompass the so-called “five freedoms” adopted by the Farm Animal Welfare Council. 

These guidelines are widely recognized and define the rights of animals when under human care:

  • Live free from hunger, thirst and malnutrition.
  • Live free of fear and anguish.
  • Live free of physical and thermal discomfort.
  • Live free of pain, injury and illness.
  • Live free to manifest natural behavior. 

Area of application

 The scope of application of the AVIANZA Animal Welfare Reference is the meat poultry sector (chickens) and covers the following links in the production chain:

Broiler farms 

From 1-day-old chicks to their departure to the processing center (farm = a single General Registry of Livestock Operations-REGA number)

These are sites of primary production of broiler chickens, and whose activity is to market and/or supply poultry to the poultry meat sector. 

The breeding system on chicken farms for meat production determines the products that can be certified under this AVIANZA Animal Welfare Reference. In accordance with Annex II of Royal Decree 637/2021, these are:

  • Organic farming.
  • Campero raised in total freedom.
  • Traditional camper.
  • Camper.
  • Extensive indoors.
  • Indoor chicken coop.

Broiler processing centers

These are facilities where live birds are treated with different practices to obtain chicken products through the slaughter, cutting and processing of the birds.  

This certification is applicable to processing centers that apply both electrical and controlled atmosphere stunning (CAS).

Who carries out the Certification?

Certification will be carried out by certification bodies that meet the requirements established by the regulations for this purpose.

The certification will be valid for one year. For the renewal of the certification, follow-up audits will be carried out to verify compliance with the requirements established in the AVIANZA Animal Welfare Reference.


Aran Zaldivar
Deputy Technical Director